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December 24, 2013

So Ordinary

You're reading that title and probably thinking, there's nothing ordinary about this week, it's Christmas! It's the most wonderful time of the year! Well, you would be correct, but bear with me for a moment and I think you'll begin to see where I'm going with this. Interestingly, the word 'ordinary' has been brought across my path for one reason or another several times these past few weeks. After pondering and reflecting on it, I began to tune in to how much ordinary there is in you and me and nearly everyone with which we come into contact. Most of us would view ourselves as ordinary folks, and you may be reflecting back on 2013 thinking that your year has been relatively ordinary. Most all of us would describe our jobs, families, activities, and even our hunting and fishing trips as pretty ordinary - most of the time nothing really happens in our lives that is noteworthy and that draws attention to us. Sometimes, in being exhausted with the ordinary of each day, we catch ourselves wishing for a change or a different situation, even just for a moment, which would make us famous or noteworthy. But after thinking about this word ordinary, I am of the impression that God is actually quite interested in our ordinary. In fact, I believe He relishes in choosing very ordinary people and very ordinary situations through which to shine His light to the world.

Take a moment to read through the story of the first Christmas in Luke Chapter 2. Now think about this - did God bring Jesus into the world in Holy grandeur at the temple for all the religious zealots to put on a pedestal? Did He bring Jesus in as an heir to the throne of a ruling and powerful government to declare His authority? Actually quite the opposite to either of these notions. Jesus, Emmanuel (God with us) came into this world through the most ordinary of people and places. His parents were a hard-working, calloused-hands carpenter and a teenager suspected of premarital sex, He was surrounded by a bunch of dirty animals and hay in a stall and His first visitors were shepherds with the reputation for theft and fighting! Now, what possibly could God have been thinking bringing Jesus into the world in these conditions? This was to be the Savior of the World! But the more I ponder on it, the more I understand that God nailed it. By entering the world like this, God was announcing to all of humanity that He was fully accepting of our ordinary lives and sinful nature and wanted to meet all people literally right where they were, where each of us still is today, with the saving and redeeming message of Christ. And as it turns out, God continues to choose very ordinary people like you and me through which to do some very incredible things in this world. And that's what makes being ordinary...truly extraordinary.

I hope you each have a Merry Christmas! Thank you so much for your support, and continuing to read and pass along these insights each week. I am looking forward to what God reveals through my outdoor experiences in 2014! - GE

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