On Wonder: a Short Reflection

As I look at all the leaves changing around me, and as I feel the cold bite of the air growing sharper, I am reminded of the wonder of our world. We don’t often consider it, but “wonder” is incredibly important to sustaining and empowering the Christian life. Why? Because wonder is how we transform, expand, and renew our imaginations. When we are wonder-filled, even the most mundane worlds become populated with possibilities. Wonder stokes our creativity, expands our horizons, and opens us up again to the novelty of each and everything. Without wonder, we can struggle to imaginethe world differently, and instead, we settle into the mindset, “this is just the way the world works.”

Yet when Christ called his disciples to follow him, he was also calling them to wonder. Whether it was changing water to wine, touching the sick, or eating with sinners, Jesus was always calling into question “the way the world works.” Jesus was always prodding the imaginations of the disciples, encouraging them to approach the world differently, to adopt a child-like sense of wonder. When the disciples ask Jesus, “who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” Jesus calls a child to him and tells the disciples that they must “become like children to enter the kingdom of heaven.” As adults, it is difficult even to imagine the kingdom of heaven because our imaginations are often ossified in the supposed “normal workings of the world,” and with it the logic of greatness, power, and success. If we can’t even imagine heaven properly, how will we partner with Christ to bring heaven to earth? Jesus encourages us to become like children, adopt the imagination of children, play like children, and be caught up in the wonder of the world like children. As children, we can imagine heaven on earth even when it has yet to arrive, and as children, we can play among possibilities bringing heaven that much closer to earth.

Let Heaven Come! Amen,

Nathan

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