Wonder

I am so grateful for the thoughtful comments on my post last week asking what this blog is aboutWhat, you say?  I write it, I should know?  Yes, well … I realize I should.  Pam emailed me after her day with Karen Maezen Miller and said, “I think you should simply say you write about the face of God.”  And I laughed, and went on with my day, and I kept coming back to it.  I don’t know that I’d say it quite like that, but I do think one of the things I am most interested in is the way that divinity itself flashes through even the most ordinary day.  And the thing is, it was only when I really started paying attention and began living inside my own life that I began to see it.

Another way of saying this: I am utterly preoccupied by wonder.

While I’m far more aware now, I do have a few memories from long ago of being simply started by the brilliance of the world.  One of the most vivid is of one late afternoon in AP Biology.  I went to high school in New Hampshire, and we went to class from 4 to 6pm, so it was pitch black during the last period for much of the year.  Pitch black, freezing cold, cloaked in ice and snow.  Hospitable, the environment was not.

I sat in AP Bio, the dark windows all around us contributing to the sense that were floating alone in the world.  My wonderful teacher could have been from central casting, with his bald head, neatly trimmed beard, and clipped British accent.  He was talking about the human body, gesturing to his own arm, talking about bones and tendons and blood vessels.  Something about the many tiny bones in the human hand.  He held his own hand up, looked at it, bent the fingers.  A hush fell over the room.  He looked at us, his dark eyes sweeping across our faces, and whispered, “Isn’t it amazing?”

Oh, it brings tears to my eyes to remember that moment.  I thought of it tonight when listening to Elissa’s gorgeous podcast called What Takes Your Breath Away?

I’m immensely grateful, more than I can express, at the frequency with which the world – and my own life – takes my breath away these days.  May I never stop being amazed.


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9 Comments

  1. Launa
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 4:46 am | Permalink

    Mary Oliver must have been talking about you:

    “all my life
    I was a bride married to amazement.
    I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.”

  2. Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    LOVE “preoccupied with wonder.” Oh, I want to do that, too! xo

  3. Laura G
    Posted May 5, 2011 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    I feel this way too Lindsey, often. Nearly every time I am with my daughter, but it didn’t start with her. I had a similar experience to your AP-Bio one when I took Chemistry. I just couldn’t believe it!

  4. Posted May 5, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    I think your description fits “wonderfully.” Truly. If only we could all retain our child-like ability to be amazed. It is a gift; we should fight to hang onto it, and celebrate it.

  5. Posted May 5, 2011 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

    What a beautiful memory.

  6. Posted May 5, 2011 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

    I’m so glad you posted this, I was just wondering this morning if you had found your answer. I think it’s simple and perfect.

  7. Posted May 5, 2011 at 6:27 pm | Permalink

    I went to college in NH and I know exactly what you mean! One of my favorite quotes is, ““It’s not the number of breaths we take, it is the number of moments that take our breath away.”

    Wonder.

    It is an amazing thing.

  8. Posted May 5, 2011 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

    Oh my. I am so there in that evening room studying biology as a teenager. What an amazing description – “floating alone in the world.” Wow. If I wasn’t typing, I would be wriggling my fingers. Thank you!!

  9. Posted May 6, 2011 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

    Amen to that!

    Love you found a way to describe your blog that speaks to you.