November 18, 2005


Acts 3:1-10

They were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him. Acts 3:10


I like being around my grandchildren because they have such an ability to be surprised. It doesn't take big things to trigger their surprise. Someone unexpected comes into the room, and they erupt with glee. Their dog does some of its funny antics, and they laugh as if they haven't seen it before. Maybe that's a reason why Jesus liked children so much and told us we should have childlike faith and trust (Mark 10:15). Is it possible that our ability to spot God's wonders grows somewhat dim as we grow older? Have we "seen it all" so many times that God's wonders don't even capture our attention anymore? When I read the New Testament, I am struck at how often people are surprised. In Acts 3 we read that everybody is "filled with wonder and amazement" because a crippled man started walking. In Mark 2 everybody is amazed because a paralyzed man is healed. On Easter Sunday the disciples were so amazed at seeing the resurrected Jesus that they hardly knew what to do. What events have filled you with wonder lately? Have you seen a seed burst into a plant? Has a newborn child come into your life? Has your daughter come to know the Lord? Have you been washed of sin and guilt? Look around at big things and little things. There are surprises all over!

Dear Lord, open my eyes to see the wonders that surround us daily. Most of all, keep me filled with wonder at what your Son did to restore us to you. For his sake, Amen.

About the author — Howard Vanderwell

Rev. Howard Vanderwell was involved in pastoral ministry in the Christian Reformed Church for 40 years, serving as a pastor in Iowa, Illinois, and Michigan. Upon retirement in 2002, he began his work at Calvin Seminary, where he helped train the ministers of the next generation. Howard and his wife, Eleanor, were married for 57 years and had three married sons and ten grandchildren.

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