For the Ordinary 

This weekend I’m in a wedding. 
Weddings are special. 
A day to celebrate two people coming together. 
A day full of laughter and tears. A day thinking about beloved memories and hopeful expectations, a time for cake and drinks. 
A wedding day is remembered forever. 
A special day. 
Not every day is special. 
Somedays get lost in the ordinary. 
What are you looking forward too? What’s the next “big thing” on your horizon? What is that special thing you can’t wait to get to do? 
Could be as simple as coffee and a conversation with a friend, or perhaps it’s a trip to somewhere tropical. 
I know you are excited for that next special day. 
So what happens to today? 
It gets lost in the ordinary. 
A few weeks ago I climbed a mountain for the first time. 
Not a hill, a real mountain. 
A mountain in the Olympic range of mountains in the state of Washington. It was tall enough that it had snow on the top. Which is something I wasn’t used to, since I grew up in mostly mountain free Michigan. 
I made it to the top of the mountain. 
It made me feel something I couldn’t quite explain. 
I had never felt that way before. 
I was in total awe of the mountain. 
I was stunned and amazed I had made it to the top. 
I was totally captured by the view stretching out before me. 
That feeling was special. 
I doubt I will ever feel it again. 
After all you only climb a mountain for the first time once. 
That was a special day. 
Not everyday is special. 
Somedays get lost in the ordinary. 
What is that memory you can’t let go of? What’s the trip you can’t stop thinking about? Who’s the person that you had such a special day with, that you can’t stop thinking about that time together, wishing you could live that day over again? 
The past can be a tool to motivate and inspire. Memories can be beautiful and precious. Yet the past can be lethal. Should we live in time that has already passed, our lives will pass by just as swiftly, and just as permanently. 
I know you love those memories. 
But if we live in memory, 
What happens to today? 
It gets lost in the ordinary. 
The ordinary can be deadly. 
Most days you don’t climb a mountain. Wedding days don’t come all that often. The majority of days are not special. 


Most days are ordinary. 
Most days are forgettable. 
The days add into weeks, the weeks into months, the months into years, and years into decades. 
And then? 
A life finished. 
A life full of forgettable days turns into a life that will be forgotten. 
We must bring beauty to the ordinary. 
The everyday has to become beautiful. 
Perhaps you are asking, 
How is this accomplished? 
How does everyday become special? How can the ordinary be beautiful? 
There are a million answers to that question. 
Some involve buying the newest car or the nicest phone. Some involve a good religion and daily prayer. Others suggest doing whatever brings pleasure whenever you feel inclined to do so. 
Those things do work. If they didn’t they would have died out long ago. 
The problem with those ideas is the temporary nature they have. 
New becomes old. 
Good becomes bad. 
Pleasure becomes pain. 
So what should we actually do? 
I’m writing about this idea, so obviously I have a suggestion. 
It has worked for me. My hope is it works for you. 
First, Be still. 
Cut back. Take it easy. Slow it down. 
Speed and quantity are not the building blocks of something special. 
Speed and quantity is the business plan of McDonald’s. 
Speed is the life blood of the modern world. Quantity is the measure of success. 
Life was not intended to be experienced that way. 
Be still. 

Second, love. 
It will be foreign at first. Disinterest and apathy are the normal. Love and passion are counter cultural. 
It will be a choice. 
You will have to choose love in the beginning of this journey. 
Choose to love the small talk on the way to work. 
Choose to love the people you pass on the street. 
Choose to love the cashier, the bus driver, the boss, and the stranger. 
Before long, much quicker than you imagine possible, the choice will disappear. 
The love will be there to stay. 
When they smile, you will smile. 
When they cry, you will cry. 
When they laugh, you will laugh. 
When you love them? 
They will know. 
And maybe. Just maybe. 
They will love you. 
Be still. 
Make the ordinary beautiful. 


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