The Case for an Ordinary Life

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No one likes to think that they’re an ordinary person. But the facts are against them. Out of the billions of people who have breathed the air of this earth across the ages, how many of them can you yourself name? How many of them do you actually care about? How many of them did great things that got them into history books?

Face it; you’re statistically likely to be one of those people. It’s very probable that you’re not going to write a book that changes thousands of lives, or start a cultural revolution that changes the course of a nation, or make a heroic choice that saves the lives of a hundred children, or anything else grand that your imagination might come up with.

But you mean the world to someone. You might not even know that you do. The someone might not even know that you do.

Few great acts ever reach us. We hear about them on the news, and we admire the good that they’ve done. What does reach us are the little acts of goodness, the choices that the people around us make every day to care about whether we have had dinner or not, to listen to us when we just need to get something out, to make sure our cars are filled with gas, and to pick up our favorite kind of gum at the store just because we were asking for gum the other day. We don’t often notice these choices, because they’re not extraordinary choices, but we would certainly notice if the people making those choices were gone.

Think about all the people in your life that it would destroy you for a time to lose. There are people who feel that way about you, even if you do nothing for them.

Don’t get caught up in the desire to do great things. Of course, I don’t mean that you shouldn’t do great things if the opportunity comes along and it’s something that God has given you a passion for. I mean that often, it feels like something’s not worth doing because it’s not big or important. Don’t buy into that. You can waste your whole life trying to figure out what one big good thing you’re meant to do and miss a million small good things that will change the lives of the people God has put in your life.

His master replied, “Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.” (Matthew 25:23)

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