by Kate Motaung
This morning, my 4-year-old son looked out the sliding door in our kitchen. It is the same sliding door that he has looked out of for the past eleven months. The same sliding door he opens and closes countless times a day as he runs outside to play with the dogs. But this morning was different. This morning he looked through the large rectangle of glass and exclaimed, “Mom! There's a mountain over there!”
Indeed, there is. It’s the same mountain that has been visible through that sliding door since long before we moved into the house. Apparently he had been too busy enjoying life from his vantage point to look up high enough to notice it.
Of course I laughed. But then I had to ask myself, “Aren't I exactly the same?” Just like my 4-year-old, I get so caught up in the mundane tasks of life that I forget to look up. I forget to breathe in the majesty and grandeur of the mountains around me. I forget to exclaim as a child, “Look!”
Often when I am driving with my three little charges in the backseat, I am amazed by how much they notice about the world around them. They can spot the tiniest little details in creation that the average adult eye might not pick up. Children can be incredibly observant, and I have learned much from mine, especially in the way they get excited about even the smallest and simplest things in life.
It’s so easy, particularly as mothers, to just keep our heads down and focus on keeping one foot in front of the next. We look down to wipe noses, wipe bums, wipe tables, wipe floors. We look down to tie muddy little shoes, to kiss scraped knees, to give hugs. We do our best to make sure everyone is clean, clothed and fed, and many days that’s about all we can manage before the sun goes down. Sometimes the monotony can be discouraging and frustrating. At times it can even feel like there is no fresh air beyond the four walls of our own homes.
Today, I'm thankful for this simple reminder to look up. I’m thankful for the reminder to not get bogged down by the repetitive and the mundane, the petty sibling quarrels and the perpetual messes. I’m thankful for the reminder to feast on even the familiar, for no other reason than the fact that it is a gift. I’m grateful for the reminder to look up and see that indeed, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands” (Psalm 19:1).
Take a moment to pause in the midst of a busy day, and look up.