What makes you wonder? What do you marvel at?
My wife and I are expecting our first child in less than three weeks. As I ask myself how I should be emotionally preparing for the moment our daughter arrives, I am at a loss. How do you prepare for something that you have never encountered before? How do you prepare for something that you know will blindside you, take your breath away, and be entirely new and unique? I know that I will love this little something more than I love myself, this life, this world. How do you prepare for that?
As I think about it more though, I find peace in the idea that rarely are we totally awed by things that we have prepared for.
I had rode long miles for two months in preparation for the six-day grind, and the 415 mile bike ride was like nothing I had ever attempted. Oddly though, I was left feeling bored with the surprising ease with which I finished.
For four years I dreamt of the state hockey championship, and at age 12 secured sweet success with my teammates, but was left slightly annoyed at the lack of euphoria once it arrived.
The completion of a two year long ambition to stand atop Uncompahgre Peak was met with a numb lack of enthusiasm, following a hike that I had deeply longed for.
In contrast, the moment I stood in front of my friends and family, with my best man and groomsmen at my side, and watched the double doors part to reveal my future father-in-law and future wife, left me unable to breathe.
The very second my wife leaned over my shoulder and uttered, “I’m pregnant”, into my ear, left me somewhere between stunned and in-disbelief.
The moment I will first hold my daughter in my arms, and her eyes find mine, and her mouth opens for her inaugural cry, I will be caught like never before. Full of fear, I will be given purpose far beyond what I have ever experienced.
Not fear in a scared sense though. No, the Hebrew word for fear, yirah, means to be awed and stand in reverence to. To be utterly taken aback by the power and beauty that has suddenly come before you.
This moment, when I am full of fear, awe, wonder, marvel and reverence is defining. It is the moment I am reminded that not only are there things in this world more powerful than me, but there are things in this world that, if I hope to have a life of any substance, demand my attention. These moments are reminders that this life cannot be about me.
When was the last time you were awed? The moments are all around you, if you choose to see them. The crux though, is that you cannot pursue being blindsided by a moment. The only preparation available to you is stepping out of your own skin and choosing to love others more than you love yourself.
Can you do that? Are you ready to step into a life of true adventure, wonder, awe, and marvel?
Where will you be awed? At what will you marvel?