Advent 18: Be Astonished

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All day, I didn’t know what I was going to write here.

A few hours ago, we settled into the bleachers for Wyatt’s basketball game. A couple rows behind us, the two team managers sat manning the video camera. I always love team managers. Afficionados of the sport but maybe not hardwired to play it, they usually model the kind of behind-the-scenes servant leadership that puts most of us to shame.

As the varsity players came out of the locker room, one of the managers said, with unbridled enthusiasm, “There’s Stephen! Dude—Stephen’s playing varsity!” They they both let out a raucous whoop and high-fived one another. Stephen, dedicated C team and JV player for the last two seasons, had been asked to suit up since varsity had two injured players. He didn’t see any minutes on the court, but the two managers had it right—total joy.

I smiled the rest of the night and thought of Mary’s Oliver’s instructions for life:

Pay attention
Be astonished
Tell about it

Sometimes life leaves us no choice but to fall in love with it.