ON ORDINARY TIMES AND ROB BELL

  • AUTHOR: // CATEGORY: Story, Theology

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    Have you ever had one of those experiences where the normal suddenly becomes something else?  Where the average turns out to be above average and the ordinary is replaced by something special?  When the coffee appointment you casually went to turned out to be a deeply enriching experience and the conversation turned into a deep seated connection with a friend.

    I hope you have.

    I was reading Rob Bell’s latest book What We Talk About When We Talk About God (put away for a moment your visceral reaction, either way) when this idea was brought up by the author.  For me, it’s like the moment when I was in the limo with my groomsmen on our way to my wedding.  That was a time when I realized more was going on than a mere car ride.  Some of my closest friends were in that limo with me and our collective stories all were coming together for that ride.  Something ordinary, a car ride, became extraordinary.

    I believe that God is with us, that he is there in between the gaps and in the ordinary things.  He’s not there like pantheists might claim.  Believe me, I am not god and that tree out the window is not god either.  But somewhere around there, the Spirit of God is there.

    The whole earth is God’s, dear reader.

    The whole earth is filled with his glory and is infused with his goodness.  Ordinary things can become something more, because the whole earth is the Lord’s and everything in it.  Along these lines, CS Lewis pointed out that there are no ordinary people, all are on a path to resplendent glory or immortal horrors.  And in the world surrounding us, ordinary things and times can become places where extraordinary life events happen.

    Be on the lookout for the ordinary becoming something more.  You never know where you might catch a glimpse of God.

    (1st of 3 parts on Rob Bell’s book What We Talk About When We Talk About God)

  • So many memories flood my mind when readingn this blog – playing football with my groomsmen the morning of my wedding, deep converstations over lunch with a friend, perfect days with my wife or with friends that I didn’t want to end. How awesome is it when God takes those ordinary moments and makes them extraordinary, as we become fully alive in the present? Great post, Jeremy!

    • I’m glad it connected, Chris. I’m so grateful in those moments, especially when it comes during mundane commutes or even eating a burrito. Then again, Chipotle is about as close to heaven as we can get. 😉

      • I’m partial to burritos myself, but I’m more of a Moe’s guy. 🙂

  • Jesse Segrist

    Ha! I remember that limo ride! That whole day was so much fun-it was such a good wedding! Anyways though, love that you’re not just criticizing the book flat out Jeremy, but that you’re reading it and gleaning the positives out of it. I know I sound like I’m being a bit cliche, but thank you for showing some reason and actually engaging the ideas and being a good example for other theologians. That is some good leadership!

    • The secret you’ll find out at the end of this series is that I actually really, really enjoyed the book! It’s not a theological work of art though, by any means. It’s a great practical, pastoral book for people who are doubting/scared/lost.

      Thank you for your kind words Jesse, means a lot coming from you.

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