A Sense of Wonder

As our thoughts turn soon to summer, camp, and vacations, many of us will be spending some time out in nature – camping in the woods or mountains, or at the beach. I was recently reminded that our awe of the natural world is one of the greatest gifts we can pass on to our children. In an excerpt from “The Goodness of Rain,” author Ann Pelo recounts a story of being out with her toddler daughter and seeing two bald eagles flying nearby. Struck by their majesty, she wanted to share the moment with her daughter, who was otherwise occupied with throwing rocks into the water. She concludes that her daughter has no language yet for eagle or raptor and no context for appreciating the rarity of the site above her. In the end, she decides to not interrupt her daughter’s enjoyment of the rocks and water, and says, “What I can give Dylan, in this moment, is my reverence, my glad astonishment at our good fortune, my upward gaze, and wordless watching."  Teaching our children a sense of awe and wonder at the world through our example and our own appreciation is a gift that will continue to bless them throughout their lives. And all it takes is our own personal reverence, a simple gaze, and wordless watching.