A kindergarten teacher was observing her classroom of children while they drew pictures. Occasionally, she would walk around the room to see each child’s work.
“What are you drawing?” she asked one little girl who was working diligently at her desk.
The girl replied, “I’m drawing God.”
The teacher paused and said, “But no one knows what God looks like.”
The little girl replied, “They will in a minute.”
We are born with utter innocence and awe, knowing no limits. Everything is new, and we trust what is around us with an uncorrupted heart. Then we start to be desensitized by the realities of life, and our automatic responses become less about “wow, look at the possibilities” to “oh crap, what now.”
A few years ago I traveled to Thailand. I was hyper-aware of the colors, the tastes, the smells, and the sounds. Everything was new and different and all of my senses were alive. I think this is what “awe” feels like – aliveness that hits my heart and heightens my senses. But I don’t live there all the time.
Just this past weekend, I was in the mountains at a place that I go often. I went to get away for a couple of days, away from laundry and clients and my computer and all the things I tell myself I should be doing. But I found that I couldn’t relax.
I was checking email and playing games on my phone. I forgot half of what I wanted at the grocery, because I was so consumed with Pokémon Go. I was disconnected and distracted, and I noticed.
I noticed, but not until the wind picked up and a storm blew in. That’s when the power went out, and the pitch-black silence brought me to my senses. I could hear the wind rushing through the trees and the branches bumping into each other. I could feel the dampness of the air as the temperatures dropped. And I could hear my own thoughts of “wow” with heightened alertness.
It was awesome.
I think I got a glimpse of what God looks like.
God meaning whatever you choose to call that power that blows the wind and moves the trees and sings with the rain on a tin roof.
Deborah Denson is a Mediator and Conflict Coach in Nashville, TN. She shares her personal journey learning to manage conflict and life in general on her blog, where she combines original art and wit into a daily dose of insight and humor for readers.