What amazes you? When was the last time you let feelings of wonder wash over and overwhelm you? What does it even mean to be awed?
The day to day tedium of life can suck the inspiration out of us. We forget to stop and look around. To breathe deeply and remember the miracle of each breath and step. The functionality of life in us and around us becomes the background to our personal stories, and we can begin to feel like this is normal. We stop being surprised by the sunrise. We forget to look up at the mountains. And we drive quickly alongside the river without turning our heads to marvel at its beauty.
This world we live in is stunning. Everywhere we have evidence of the greatness of our Creator. When we look at the vastness of the ocean, or ponder the sweet perfection of a pair of infant hands, we catch a glimpse of God’s imagination. Just think of that. If you hold the petals of a rose in your hand, you have a physical experience of a thing that once existed nowhere else but in the mind of God.
It is good for us to remember who God is. The reminders are everywhere, but sometimes we need to choose to pause in our daily routine and look up. The following Psalm is full of admiration for the Creator and His creation. Take a moment to read, allowing the images to fill your mind with awe. Or, click this link and listen to the Psalm, closing your eyes to more easily see the images being described. Then, as you go about the rest of your day, try to take this feeling with you. We are all of us touched by the hand of God and surrounded by His beauty.
1 Praise the LORD, my soul.
LORD my God, you are very great;
you are clothed with splendor and majesty.
2 The LORD wraps himself in light as with a garment;
he stretches out the heavens like a tent
3 and lays the beams of his upper chambers on their waters.
He makes the clouds his chariot
and rides on the wings of the wind.
4 He makes winds his messengers,
flames of fire his servants.
5 He set the earth on its foundations;
it can never be moved.
6 You covered it with the watery depths as with a garment;
the waters stood above the mountains.
7 But at your rebuke the waters fled,
at the sound of your thunder they took to flight;
8 they flowed over the mountains,
they went down into the valleys,
to the place you assigned for them.
9 You set a boundary they cannot cross;
never again will they cover the earth.
10 He makes springs pour water into the ravines;
it flows between the mountains.
11 They give water to all the beasts of the field;
the wild donkeys quench their thirst.
12 The birds of the sky nest by the waters;
they sing among the branches.
13 He waters the mountains from his upper chambers;
the land is satisfied by the fruit of his work.
14 He makes grass grow for the cattle,
and plants for people to cultivate—
bringing forth food from the earth:
15 wine that gladdens human hearts,
oil to make their faces shine,
and bread that sustains their hearts.
16 The trees of the LORD are well watered,
the cedars of Lebanon that he planted.
19 He made the moon to mark the seasons,
and the sun knows when to go down.
20 You bring darkness, it becomes night,
and all the beasts of the forest prowl.
21 The lions roar for their prey
and seek their food from God.
22 The sun rises, and they steal away;
they return and lie down in their dens.
23 Then people go out to their work,
to their labor until evening.
24 How many are your works, LORD!
In wisdom you made them all;
the earth is full of your creatures.
25 There is the sea, vast and spacious,
teeming with creatures beyond number—
living things both large and small.
26 There the ships go to and fro,
and Leviathan, which you formed to frolic there.
27 All creatures look to you
to give them their food at the proper time.
28 When you give it to them,
they gather it up;
when you open your hand,
they are satisfied with good things.
29 When you hide your face,
they are terrified;
when you take away their breath,
they die and return to the dust.
30 When you send your Spirit,
they are created,
and you renew the face of the ground.
31 May the glory of the LORD endure forever;
may the LORD rejoice in his works—
32 he who looks at the earth, and it trembles,
who touches the mountains, and they smoke.
33 I will sing to the LORD all my life;
I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.
34 May my meditation be pleasing to him,
as I rejoice in the LORD.
35 But may sinners vanish from the earth
and the wicked be no more.
Praise the LORD, my soul.
Praise the LORD.