Together they entered the darkness of the night and walked into the midst of wonder. Hand-in-hand the two of them watched the shimmering beauty of the northern lights.
That’s the way my mother began the story of when she was a little girl. Of living on Cape Cod. Of how her father interrupted her homework one evening to show her God’s handiwork.
“Wake up, sweetheart.”
We hadn’t lived in southeastern Washington State very long. I must have been about seven years old when my father stood beside my bed and whispered those gentle words.
Pushing sleep away, I opened my eyes and smiled back at him in the dim light. He bent close, and I reached to touch his dark mustache. “Why did you wake me up, Daddy?”
“There’s something I want you to see.”
He tucked the blanket around me, swept me up into his arms, and carried me outside.
And beneath the cool, blue-black desert sky, he held me, silently pointing at a wavy curtain of green and blue light. I held my breath, mystified, filled with awe, as I watched the gracefully undulating, colorful, shimmering phenomenon that my father told me was the Aurora borealis. Even the name was magical, and I’ve never forgotten the wonder I felt that night.
Dad had interrupted my sleep because wanted me to see something special—something far more important than sleep.
Interrupting homework or sleep to behold one of God’s works is a beautiful and unforgettable gift for any child. Children have a depthless capacity for wonder. Helping to fill that capacity is both a joy and a great responsibility for those who care for them.
Just as I showed them to her, my daughter has pointed out natural wonders, from the majestic to the mundane, to her children. And so, appreciation for the wonders of God’s creation passes down the steps of time and another generation has learned the value of interruptions.
Jesus was often stopped in the midst of what he was doing to speak to the need of another. Parents interrupted his teachings, placing their little ones into His arms, wanting their children to experience the touch and attention of this great man of miracles, the Son of God. Jesus never turned them away. The children were blessed indeed.
“Then little children were brought to Him that He might put His hands on them and pray, but the disciples rebuked them. But Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven’” (Matthew 19:13-14).
When have you been interrupted and your eyes opened to God’s handiwork?
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