Updated: Nov 14, 2021
“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’
Known as Brother Lawrence, Nicholas Herman was born in 1611 in Lorraine France to a poor peasant family. After serving as a soldier he eventually joined a Carmelite order in Paris where he took the name – Lawrence of the Resurrection. He remained a kitchen servant all his life and was quoted as saying: The time of business does not differ with me from the time of prayer; and in the noise and clatter of my kitchen, while several persons are at the same time calling for different things, I possess God in as great tranquility as if I were on my knees.
He learned to practice the presence of God in the ordinary everyday mundane tasks of life while scrubbing pots and pans. He called himself The Lord of Pots and Pans.
Ordinary life has fallen on hard times and is seen (if we believe the surveys) as a waste or irrelevant. The noble and important life skills of motherhood and fatherhood for example have been portrayed as foolish and untrustworthy. A 2012 study found that a desire for fame specifically for the sake of being famous was the preferred future goal among a group of 10-12 year olds, overshadowing goals of financial success, achievement, and a sense of community. The reality is fame itself is temporary- it quickly passes. To be authentically famous, you need to work hard to prove you are worthy of that fame – and then be able to live with it.
The pride and hubris of our sin natures, in a time that has made God irrelevant through the secular religions of scientism, materialism and consumerism builds yet again a Tower of Babel to the stars.
Christ lived an ordinary, simple life and that was no accident. Self-sacrifice, self-forget fullness and death to self are fundamental to a gospel centered life.
Christians that quietly go about their everyday lives doing and working for the benefit and welfare of others, in Christ’s name are the “Salt of the Earth”. This is God’s Kingdom made manifest. C. S Lewis says in Mere Christianity, “The very moment you wake up each morning. All your wishes and hopes for the day rush at you like wild animals. And the first job each morning consists simply in shoving them all back; in listening to that other voice, taking that other point of view, letting that other larger, stronger, quieter life come flowing in. And so on, all day.”
The fact that Christ pursues all of us as does the Holy Spirit each day, all day escapes most people, most Christian’s in fact. We are so distracted from the voice of the Holy Spirit that we seldom if ever intentionally consider it.
The ordinary influence of God’s Spirit is a greater blessing than any of the extraordinary experiences we will ever have. Our consciousness of the moment-by-moment indwelling of the Spirit of God is a more satisfying, empowering feeling than any mountain-top.