I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again Christianity can be boring. It’s not every day you see pillars of fire and smoke, the Spirit hovering around as a dove, and people being raised from the dead. Christianity can be a grind and ritualistic. It can feel flat, very mundane. I get this. You may need to take a break from the grind and ritualism, get some perspective, take a deep breath and reset. Maybe the church your in isn’t right, maybe you’re not spending enough time with other people, maybe your not spending enough time by yourself, maybe your not resting enough or working or being creative enough (this blog, for example, is a great outlet for me). Recalibrate, get some wisdom and insight and go back refreshed.
I wonder though if the mundane is just as important.
I wonder if sometimes my perspective on what the Christian life should be is skewed a bit. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for the awe and wonder in the Christian life. However, perhaps the mundane is just as important as the big bang moments we all long to see… maybe even more important. What I mean is this. We read Acts or something and what we see from the author (Luke) is intentional highlight reels in order to report on the progression and expansion of the early Church. Of course, we’re gonna see miracles and revivals, reading about the Church braking bread just doesn’t make for a good story (Acts 2:42). There’s an intent from the author that we sometimes mistake for an exclusive prescriptive text rather than allowing the story to just unfold and live our lives informed by it.
Here’s what I mean. When we read books like Acts we should be saying “there’s the Christian life in all its glory.” But we should also consider the space in between the highlights, the years of downtime between events that God was most likely using to prepare hearts and minds for His Kingdom and mission. Take the Apostle Paul as an example. We read that he was converted in a blinding flash of light, a voice from the Heavens saying “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” and Paul being lead into Damascus where he recovers his sight and is baptised by Ananias (Acts 9:1-19). Very dramatic. I certainly didn’t hear God’s voice when I became a Christian, no dove fell on me, I wasn’t blinded by a light. However, what we don’t often realise about Paul’s experience is that he went to Arabia (Galatians 1:11-2:21) among other places and does only God knows what. What I’m saying is even Paul had to be prepared, he wasn’t converted and then immediately used by God to preach the Gospel and rapidly expand the early Church.
The mundane is important, more important than the high moments. Without them, the bang moments aren’t going to happen. It can be boring, it can be dull but change your perspective. God is sanctifying you (Acts 26:18, 2 Timothy 2:21), conforming you to the image of His Son (Romans 8:29), cultivating your spirit and heart to walk in His will (Ephesians 2:10). He wants to prune off the darkness and the sin, the brokenness and fill you with Himself. This could take time, even years (think how long it took the Israelites the get into the promised land). This all happens through the normality of life, through the daily grind, through relationships, prayer, reading, and doing the mundane Christian life. Let God do His thing because His thing is very powerful even if you don’t always notice it.
2 thoughts on “God and the Mundane”
Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, “Do it again”; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, “Do it again” to the sun; and every evening, “Do it again” to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.
Reminded of this Chesterton gem.
Remember every fighter trains days, months on end for one twenty-five minute fight????? The question is are we willimg to gain the strenth through life daily to win when it’s our turn to fight the good fight and keep the faith?