Finding Contentment in a Mundane Life

Written by Mark Farnham

On March 23, 2014

61L0lFuj3PLMany Christians live from one spiritual high to another. They look forward to the next big conference, concert, or special event that promises a mighty work of God, an experience of Jesus, or outpouring of the Spirit. In between the exhilarating spiritual events they have to endure the monotony of real life. Boring, repetitious, and uneventful. In his book, Boring: Finding an Extraordinary God in an Ordinary Life (B&H, 2013), Michael Kelley reminds us that because of God’s unfailing presence and working in this world, everyday life should be anything but boring for a Christian. He writes,

 God’s constant presence is ultimately what makes the insignificant significant. If we look through the pages of Scripture, we find time and time again God invading the ordinary and then making the ordinary into something extraordinary. It’s not that the thing itself changes; rather, whatever it is, in the midst of its ordinariness, becomes ordinary by the virtue of the presence of God…

According to [G. K.] Chesterton, it is a mark of strength, not weakness, to do the same thing gain and again. It is, then, the weak man who is constantly searching and seeking out the next great thing, never content with what stands before him. Ironically, it is the ability to do that which we might consider mundane with honor and even joy that is most difficult for us. We must, in a sense, fight to not fight to escape the ordinary. When we do, we’ll find the extraordinary lurking inside what has become ordinary to us.

I’ve heard it said, and I agree, that the most manly thing a man can do is not to fight an enemy or win a battle, but simply to come home every night to his family, and be a good husband and father. The reality of life is mundane. For the Christian, it is in the daily grind where our faithfulness is tested. First Thessalonians 4:11-12 reminds us of our calling:

Aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you, so that you may walk properly before outsiders and be dependent on no one.

If you find yourself always looking for the extraordinary in order to feel close to God or need a spiritual experience to stay motivated, this may be a book that will help you see God in the ordinary.

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