Sunday, June 1, 2014

Ordinary Redefined


This morning I woke up and read my Bible Verse for the day (yes, as you would suspect, the one that is listed below).  It speaks of how 12 ordinary men became the extraordinary disciples of Jesus.  Men who were ordinary in their day with ordinary careers - fishermen, tax collector, and Jesus himself, a carpenter.  It is amazing to me how Jesus took 12 men, who never had any intention of following Christ, and changed history.  I can't imagine being Peter, struggling to gain his share of the fish to support himself, and being asked by Jesus to become a "fisher of men".  Incredible?  Well, that's our Lord, isn't he just incredible?

As the morning progressed, I was in church and once again, the Dear Lord emphasized the message of my verse this morning.  Today, Pastor's assistant, Jane, is retiring.  As Pastor himself shared, an ordinary woman who did extraordinary things - supporting Pastor and our church in the mission of sharing Jesus' love.  After many kind, well-deserved words were spoken, our Prayer Quilt Ministry presented a quilt for someone in need - in TEXAS - a long way from New Hampshire.  As I looked at the beautiful tapestry, I couldn't help but think that, once again, ordinary people doing extraordinary things.  In this case our prayer quilt ministry team gathers around the table and takes pieces of fabric, puts them together with ties that are knotted by all of us in prayer, to be shared with the recipient - to let them know they are not struggling alone.  Truly incredible.

Yes, that begs the question, what other ordinary people are doing extraordinary things?  Are you one of those ordinary people?  Do you WANT to be extraordinary?  I know, (as my husband tells me all the time), too many questions.  Let's take them one at a time.

Think through your day, your week, your month, your lifetime.  Do you know people who have accomplished extraordinary things?  No, I don't know personally any political figures.  No, I don't know any sports figures or actors/actresses.  Who do I know that has accomplished extraordinary things?  I know moms who have given birth - a miraculous event.  I know people who have survived cancer, and their caregivers who helped them - a miraculous event.  I know people who have listened to someone in need, my needs, and helped those who needed to be heard to move on their life journey - a miraculous event.  I know Sunday School teachers, pastors, parishioners, loved ones who shared the word of God - a miraculous event.

All of these people would consider themselves ORDINARY.  I don't see anything ordinary about bringing life to this earth and caring for it, for surviving unmeasurable odds, and for bringing the love of Jesus to someone who needs to hear that message.  Take a moment and reflect about the ordinary people we know:  the ones that grace our households, the ones that we share as our family, the ones that we call friends/coworkers/acquaintances.  All of these people can bring something extraordinary to our lives.  The special touch when we need one, words of encouragement when we are down, a listening ear and guiding words, the love of Christ in human form - all special ways that I am sure we have been touched by extraordinary people.

Now, the real question.  Are you extraordinary?  I am very-well convinced that the answer to that question is YES!!  We may not always feel as if we are extraordinary, but, once again, think over your week, month, years, and I am confident that you will find moments when you did extraordinary things.  Help care for a loved one, sat with a friend, wrote an encouraging note, told someone you loved them, and yes, maybe even shared Jesus' name and your testimony with another.  ALL of these acts are extraordinary gifts from God.  He uses you, uses me, ordinary people to do extraordinary things.  It is simple, simple faith - this time - God having faith in US to do His will, to walk in His way, to love others as He loves us.  Simple faith in God, in us, in others.

Take time to reflect on the ordinary people in your life - and thank them for being extraordinary people.  Always remember, you may feel as if you're ordinary - but God places extraordinary gifts for us to share.  May you have a blessed week in the Lord!!

"When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus."  (NIV)  
Acts 4:13

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Thank you for visiting my blog. I hope we can share how God's grace has been life changing and that SIMPLE FAITH, getting back to a life that is rooted in the basics, can truly set us free to achieve so much in our lives.