Friday, February 12, 2021

Psalm 19 says: “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.”

Since he was a boy, my son Luke has told me that his church is the ocean.  While I rolled my eyes at this witty remark from this avid surfer, this response has grown on me over the years. Don’t get me wrong; Luke always attended Mass on Sundays growing up and brings his family now as an adult.  But there is something religious for him about the ocean.  What he experiences in the sea is summed up in the word – awe.  The power and majesty of the ocean give him a sense of the transcendence of God. He feels awe in the ocean, which helps him experience the power and majesty of God. 

Awe enables us to perceive in the world hints of the divine, to sense the ultimate in the common and the simple.  Moments of awe allow us to feel the passing of God.  What we often cannot comprehend by analysis is grasped in a moment of wonder and awe. 

Awe is one of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. Wonder and awe are God's gifts that enrich our lives and allow us to feel his touch. Awe opens our eyes to the presence of God in the world of nature. It allows us to see God in each other, feel his presence in prayer and in the celebration of the sacraments. 

If we zero in on the sights, smells, and sounds around us and savor details we might not have noticed before in our daily rush, everything can inspire awe. The main requirement for channeling more wonder is learning how to slow down, let go of worries and be present in the moment.

Try one of these: 

  • Spend time with a child. Young kids seem to live in a perpetual state of awe over nearly everything they do and see. Their amazement is contagious and can help you experience the world through their fresh eyes. 
  • Learn about inspiring people like the saints allowing yourself to be energized by their example. 
  • Go surfing, or at least walk by the seashore. 
  • Take a walk in nature.
  • Let me close with the words of St. Paul. 

    “May God, the source of hope, fill you with all joy and peace by means of your faith in him, so that your hope will continue to grow by the power of the Holy Spirit.” -  Romans 15:13

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