Loving and Praising God in the Ordinary

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I am a person who loves celebrations! I love the holidays, birthdays, book launches, and all the things. That means I’m always looking forward to the next big event. However, in the church calendar, although we have Advent, Lent, Easter, and Pentecost, we also have a season called, “Ordinary Days”. I love that! The truth is while the calendar holds many moments of special celebrations, much of our Christian walk is lived out in ordinary days.  

Ordinary days are the days when we simply work, play, connect, eat, and sleep. We might do the mundane tasks of laundry, cooking, or cleaning. Ordinary implies nothing exciting or earth shattering, just the common moments of life.  

For many, it’s very easy to praise God on the big celebration days, but it may not be easy on the ordinary days. We get distracted and task oriented. We do the next thing, and perhaps go an entire day without realizing we haven’t communicated with God.  For some it’s easier to press into God in a crisis. The crisis awakens our soul to a desperate need for God and we press in to survive.  But what about the  “ordinary” moments of life?

The Apostle Paul wrote, “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him” (Colossians 3:17). The words of Paul summarize my thoughts. If our lives are truly going to be centered on Christ, we need to invite Him into all the ordinary moments.

What does it look like to love and praise God well in the ordinary? 

Here are a few suggestions that have worked well in my life:

Establish Rhythms. When I was in high school, a youth worker challenged me to begin reading my Bible and journaling every morning. I never forgot his words, and I’ve made that a regular practice in my life. I know that every morning, as soon as I grab coffee, I will be on my knees spending time in worship and then opening my Bible and writing down thoughts that God gives me. I’ve done it for years. It’s part of my rhythms to keep God central. I know that my last thoughts at night before I fall asleep will be my prayers and praises to God for His faithfulness through the day. I don’t have to think about these rhythms: they are a part of my routine. Let me encourage you. Establish rhythms that will help you flow in sync with God through your day. 

Invite Jesus into your everyday tasks. What do I mean? Here’s an example: when you are folding laundry, pray for and praise God for the person whose laundry you are folding. A friend of mine thanks God as she folds every piece of clothing that God has provided. When you are cooking, thank God that you have food to give your family. When you’re out mowing the grass, praise God for the beauty of creation. When you’re with your family, thank God for the giggles, the chaos and the tears. Each one is a precious gift. 

Steward White Space Well. I’m struck by the fact that Dallas Willard felt that hurry was the greatest threat to our spiritual journeys. I would add to that: hurry plus cell phones equals constant distractions. We need breathing room in our lives. When you have a few quiet moments, don’t go to your phone and start scrolling. Don’t fill the space with noise. Just savor a few short moments of silence with the Lord. In the words of the Psalmist, “Be still” and know that He is God (Psalm 46:10). 

I am convinced that if we are going to truly center our lives around Christ, we have got to learn to love and praise Him in our ordinary moments. May I gently challenge you? This week, be attuned to your ordinary moments and invite Jesus into those moments. It’s amazing as you do this over the years, the intimacy that will grow between you and God. You will begin to experience His presence in deeper ways than you ever thought possible. 

Big News!  My 15th book, Cultivating Deeper Connections in A Lonely World releases September 3.  With loneliness at an all-time high, there is a desperate need for this book in our culture. Would you ask the Lord for a few people that could do a book club with you this fall? You can pre-order your copy here

This week our encore episode on The Connected Mom is the conversation we had with Alli Worthington. It was an amazing and fun conversation that you don’t want to miss.

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