Forever Young

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
    for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. 

SEVERAL YEARS AGO, while living in Colorado, we were privileged to have a rather spectacular view of the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains from our home.  The photo above is the sight we would see every day from our front porch.  The twin mountain peaks, Long’s and Meeker, were an incredible gift from God that we grew to love.  Each new snowfall in the mountain range just west of our community of Longmont brought new and breathtaking beauty.  It seemed that we just couldn’t get enough of this unique visual feast. 

A trip to the mountains nearly every week on my day off was a much anticipated excursion for all of us—except Gideon.  He was three and four years old over the course of those two years.  He dreaded the trip to the mountains and the endless hiking we forced upon his little legs.  Gideon currently lives closer to the mountains than we did while in Longmont and spends as much time in them as possible, skiing and backpacking.   Now he has a little guy of his own he will be taking to the mountains.  My, how things change.

But I digress.  While it doesn’t describe most Coloradans, Jean and I discovered a significant number of people who had spent their entire lives beneath the shadow of the mountains, that had never, or rarely, been to the mountains.  That seemed unfathomable to me.  Breathtaking beauty was taken for granted.   What is it that dulls the senses to the point that we become numbed, calloused, or oblivious to beauty around us?  God created all of this for His glory and our pleasure.  But what is ever new for Him becomes old and wearisome to us.  We yawn with boredom at stunning beauty.
I have often heard people defend sporadic or infrequent observance of the Lord’s Supper by claiming weekly observance would strip it of its significance.  Many say the same about weekly attendance with the church.  Routine and repetition are seen as monotonous and tedious.  But is repetition really the problem?  I don’t see them saying that about the more frequent daily repetition of lunch or supper.  I think the problem is more one of growing old on the inside than a problem of routine and repetition.

Blogger Jill Carattini, while referencing G.K. Chesterton, captures the heart of the issue well.  Carattini observes that,

“Jesus spoke of the kingdom as belonging to the likes of little children, and many have speculated the child’s ability to see the world with wonder as one of the reasons for it. G.K. Chesterton saw the child’s ability to revel in the monotonous as another. The children’s cry for more, reasoned Chesterton, is a quality of the very God who created them. ‘It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening, “Do it again’ to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we. The repetition in Nature may not be a mere recurrence; it may be a theatrical encore.’ 

“For the child on the slide or the toddler with a story, ‘Do it again!’ is far from a cry of boredom or routine, but a cry for more of life itself.”1

May you never grow tired of a sunset, or the smell of a rose, or the song of a bird, or the majesty of towering mountains, or the laugh of a child.  May you never grow cold to the embrace of your covenant partner, or the endless questions of your children.  May you never grow weary of gathering each week for worship with your church family, or of singing songs of praise, or of remembering the sacrifice of your Savior in the sharing of the Lord’s Supper, or the redemption of your soul.  To grow weary of these is to grow old of heart.  And life in Christ is never old, never monotonous, never mundane.  In Christ we are forever young.