I would be a very good conversation buddy to a hippie from the 60’s with this article (for every stereotypical reason). I’m fully aware of that, and no offense to any hippies out there, but I assure you I’m completely sober right now. Notice the lack of words like “dude,” “copacetic,” and “psychedelic.”
Now that I’ve given a proper disclaimer, I have a question for you. When was the last time you stopped and recognized the world around you? I don’t mean just seeing what’s around you, but actually considering the rhyme and reason to it. The “why?” and the “how?” that we so often overlook and take for granted. Every once in a while as I’m driving to or from work, I get these moments of clarity where I see myself and everything around me for the miracles they are. There’s genuine beauty (rhyme) and a mysterious and awesome explanation (reason) to everything and everyone around us at every moment of every day.
So many of us don’t give a second thought to anything. We can so easily have the perspective that we’re in control and all that matters or exists is our own self-defined success. We bypass the amazement for even having the ability to feel any emotion to care or think in the first place. Every moment, every feeling, every physical thing, and every system has a certain rhyme and reason to it that is capable of blowing our minds if we genuinely consider it.
Last time you were stuck in traffic, you were probably lost in the music coming from your car speakers, or maybe your head was steaming over the fact that you were technically on the highway but might as well have been in a parking lot. You probably had your smart phone in your hand because unlike all those other people, you know how to text and drive. Chances are, you weren’t considering that you were completely surrounded by other people who each have their own, completely separate lives. They each have an amazing story to tell just like you do. They each feel fear, love, insecurity, and joy. They each have faults, dreams, talents, and a family. Statistics show that you’d find several things in common with every single one of them if you had the chance to get to know them. All of this might go right out the window because you’d rather see the cars around you as empty, mechanical roadblocks simply there to keep you from going where you want to go. But the world is absolutely packed with people who have the same emotions and fears, brokenness and hope for happiness that you do. For me, that perspective makes it a lot easier to love my neighbors.
We all have something else in common right now: our hearts are beating, our lungs are breathing, and our brains are reading. No big deal, right? Wrong. It’s amazing. Our hearts are told to beat about 4,000 times a day by seemingly random electric pulses from our brains (made of mostly water, mind you). They pump this fluid through an intravenous system of tubes that could be stretched out to wrap around the equator twice and then some. That bright red fluid carries in it these little critters that are constantly seeking out poison in our bodies that intend to do us harm. They are endlessly rooting out cancer we never know about and deadly viruses we never feel the nausea of.
Don’t even get me started on the lungs. And reading?! Your eyes are the most advanced piece of technology the world has ever known– more precise than a laser beam, and more sensitive than a touch screen. You are the owner of two machines that can not only move insanely fast and automatically (usually in the same direction), but are able to reflect and process light in the shape of patterns and symbols on a white computer screen, which your brain decodes instantaneously, generating completely new pictures and ideas that somehow make sense to the world we’ve learned about so far in our lives. We read a sequence of symbols that could easily be seen as simple chicken-scratch, but instead, our brain plays a movie of an actual chicken scratching the dirt– maybe even a close-up shot of those nasty-looking, bony feet and talons.
Maybe none of this amazes you, in which case I’m sorry you’ve allowed the world to be so boring. It’s no wonder you feel purposeless, lost, and frustrated.
We each owe it to ourselves to have an out of body experience every once in a while. Don’t let yourself get lost in this world without constantly considering the inner-workings of it. We owe it to God to take a step back and admire the things we’ve become completely desensitized to and lost all wonder and amazement in– things He has created and things we’ve come to claim as “natural” or “normal” despite having no way of actually explaining them. We can measure them all we want, but things like light and gravity still have no scientific explanation regarding “why” or “how.”
The Bible explains in multiple places that creation itself declares the majesty and glory of our God. But when was the last time you stopped and paid attention to any of it? I can’t think of any quicker way to battle and let go of those little deceptive moments of doubt that creep in against God’s existence and goodness. Those moments are an automatic way to break into a state of healthy fear, worship and adoration. They are how we can consistently remind ourselves of the rhyme and reason for why we’re each actually here in the first place, which is to love, honor, and acknowledge Him.