My granddaughter is not quite 2 years old, and she is easily entertained and fascinated with the simplest of things. She finds beauty in the everyday glimpses of creation that most of us have become used to, perhaps even bored by. A simple “I see (and we then take turns filling in the blank), and she gets excited to point out her new baby brother’s nose and ears, or even a little mound of sand outside with ants crawling in and out of their tiny house.
Last week we stood very still together under a tree and watched as one leaf at a time fell to the ground. We waved to red cars and blue trucks, yellow school buses and motorcycles, and she was as excited as I might be if someone had purchased me a cruise ticket to Alaska!
Yesterday while at work, I found out that the ceramic “happy worm” we together put in the dirt outside her house broke in two, and she was very sad. Her great big little world is just so sweet and simple. She already unknowingly loves God’s creation, and she loves people and the time she gets to spend with them.
Ya know – This is not that much different than some of the older people I know, and what brings them joy. Perhaps our slowing down as we age is partly purposeful, to bring us back to a place of simple awe at the things that really matter – like falling leaves, and the gift of time with those we love. All that stuff we lose sleep over in the middle – (fill in your own blank – I certainly have my own idols!) – is really the stuff that doesn’t matter that much after all.
Maybe, just maybe – it’s in our physical and chronological aging that we receive the gift of returning to our youthful joy – if we choose to! Thank you, Lyla – for the wisdom you don’t realize you have, and for reminding me to notice ant hills, falling leaves, and happy worms. Gummy loves you & your baby brother, honey!