Reclaim a Sense of Wonder

Yael Eckstein  |  January 24, 2023

Five individuals raising their hands while looking over the sunset.

How many are your works, LORD!
    In wisdom you made them all;
    the earth is full of your creatures.
— Psalm 104:24

Today, I continue with a new devotional series on joy, simcha — the joy found in the grateful acceptance and celebration of each day God has given to us. Join me as we explore teachings on the joy found in connecting with God and with others.

Do you remember the curiosity and wonder you felt as a child? I remember lying on the grass in our backyard, I must have been 7 or 8 years old, and watching a caterpillar climb the stalk of a tall flower. I was mesmerized. I often wish I could return to that place of magic and wonder, that childlike way of seeing God’s Creation.

The Jewish practice of praising God before everything we eat is one way we try to retain that sense of wonder. Every apple, every piece of bread, and every sip of water is a reason to praise God for what He created.

But there is one day each month that we really focus on the blessings of the natural world and reclaim a sense of wonder. Every month when the moon is new, just a sliver in the sky, we celebrate it and all of nature. One of the things we do is read Psalm 104: “How many are your works, LORD! In wisdom you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.”

Reclaim a Sense of Wonder

In Psalm 104, King David reflects on the wonders of our world. He speaks about how the waters once covered the entire world, but then God separated the waters and placed them in oceans and rivers so that people would have land to live upon (vv. 6–9). David delights in the fact that God created a world complete with delicious fruit and vegetation that can sustain both man and animal.

But not only that, God also created things such as oil and wine — things that are not necessary for life, but are gifts that bring joy and relaxation to people (v.15). David even notices and thanks God that the most dangerous beasts hunt at night when people are home, but return to their habitats during the day when people are out and about (vv. 20–23) — things we probably never even noticed!

The flawless harmony in the natural world leads David to exclaim, “How many are your works, LORD! In wisdom you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.” Indeed, God created an amazing and diverse world for us to live in and enjoy.

Let’s reclaim our sense of wonder!

Your Turn:

Today, let us look at God’s world and appreciate it with new eyes. Every wonderful thing that you will discover is a manifestation of His love for us and a testimony to His glory.