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The Ordinary Radical Posted 5.27.2016

As I read the paragraph.  I thought of you.  All of you.

 

And then it came up in our community group this week.  Somebody else thought of you too.

 

In this day balance in life and theology is often difficult to strike.  There is pressure to do the extreme in our spiritual lives.  Nobody wants to be just ordinary. We must push ourselves outside of our comfort zone and do something radical for God.  But there is also a very real sense that the most radical thing you can do for God is live for Him in daily living.  Being patient with the kids.  Loving your mate.  Doing your best at work.

 

In our restlessness to always push the envelope in our walk with God, we forget that the most radical thing we can do is pray faithfully or learn patience or do the dishes or bear good fruit that is visible to our next-door-neighbor.

 

And then there was THE paragraph.  It jumped out at me and some of the others in our group.  It was written in a blog post by Tish Harrison Warren.  It went like this:

 

“My life is really rich in dirty dishes (and diapers) these days and really short in revolutions.  I go to a church full of older people who live pretty normal, middle-class lives in nice, middle-class houses.  But I have really come to appreciate this community, to see their lifetimes of sturdy faithfulness to Jesus, their commitment to prayer, and the tangible, beautiful generosity that they show those around them in unnoticed, unimpressive, unmarketable, un-revolutionary ways.  And each week, we average sinners and boring saints gather around ordinary bread and wine and Christ Himself is there with us.”

 

Well, the wine part is not so much us, for we are at the core, Baptists.  Grape juice is just fine.

 

We all face this tension in our lives.  There is a drive to want to do big things and impact the world for Jesus.  We want to be radical disciples of Jesus, and for that should be commended.  But I also think that we can overlook the ordinary in pursuit of the radical.  And as we do, we fail to recognize that it is the ordinary that is radical.  Working on the basic disciplines of the spiritual life is radical.  Displaying the fruit of the Spirit at the 3:00 am feeding or during that 5:00 am fever is radical.  Loving the coworker who is unkind and even rude is radical.  Going to Bombo is radical.  Staying home and loving the children in the nursery is maybe even more radical.  What if is was more godly to do the staying and serving at home, than it is to preach to thousands. 

 

It is out of the mundane that change occurs, that children learn, that a marriage is strengthened, that neighbors see the glory of God.  Don’t overlook the ordinary in pursuit of the radical.  Because most often the revolutionary is right where you are today.  If…and I really mean if…you are striving to please God in everything you do.  Are you?  That’s really the question, isn’t it?

 

And I don’t say it enough…I love you.


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