The Dumbing Down of Observing

It is a simple sketch from a quiet evening around sunset during summer. Why don’t we see these scenes? The moon has a regular cycle in the sky. Why don’t we see it? The scriptures actually speak of the process of growing insensitive or oblivious to people and things. There is something about the cares and pleasures of this world, especially if they are immediate and dominate our senses, that make us insensitive to what is around us. People rush to interact with a cell phone while a human being and friend is feet away. Media thrives on changing scenes between 1 and 2 seconds to keep the senses of the watcher fully engaged. Moms and Dads most commonly resort to using media eye candy to keep children engaged but cannot seem to find the time to talk one on one with the same children the same length of time. Cities light up the sky but hide the heavens.

It is no wonder that  simple observing disciplines, which is being watchful and learning from creation around us, is lost in the noise of sensory overload. So the sketch below is simple: one sunset as the crescent moon is setting, a few clouds, light play among the clouds. But there is more to the practiced observer, because it notes a moment in the precision motion of earth with the moon, shows the effects of weather in summer (also referenced in the scripture), and displays the visual changes that accompany the daily event. God has made his work more than evident if a person takes the time to observe it.

Take time to observe. Take even more time to teach children to observe. The life filled to the brim of sensory overload will give a false sense of living to a person while it also acts as a filter to see the obvious: real creation, real people, and real communication. It is very easy to live a lie by rolling from one sensory overload to the next; it is much harder to learn to stand back or stop to observe what is important.


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