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About the Writer:
Cindy Amelung

With a warm heart and a joyful spirit, Cindy reveals Godly principles and heavenly purposes for the circumstances of life. Her honesty before the Lord and in her writings help her readers connect, learn, grow and develop a contagious hope that God will bring good things from astounding situations.



What's So Special About Ordinary?

By Cindy Amelung

Synopsis: Being ordinary has it's special rewards.

It is the middle of February and it’s a Monday morning. The groundhog saw his shadow so there is 6 more weeks of winter to endure. As you look out your window, you honestly believe it may be more like 6 months of winter. You are sick for the umpteenth time and so are your kids. Even the dog is sick.

As you struggle to get ready for work you are moody, grumpy and grateful for absolutely nothing. As you read your daily devotional, you aren’t really absorbing the words or the ‘thought for the day’; you are distracted, your mind racing in a million different directions. In your heart you know the Lord deserves better than that from you and you sigh a deep sigh, knowing you have let Him down. You glance at your ‘verse for the day’ one last time and it mocks you – I Thessalonians 5:18 “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” What on earth is there to give thanks for on this cold February day?

Plenty …. but first you have to get a glimpse of how special ordinary can be. I know you are shaking your head, but let me prove my point. When you are sick and have been in bed for several days, what is the one thing you want more than anything else? An ordinary bath; a chance to clean up and put on clean, ordinary pajamas. Maybe a bowl of soup, some crackers – just an ordinary meal. The car breaks down and you have to get a ride for a few days – you don’t have a car when you get home from work and you can’t just run to the store for something you need like you ordinarily would. All you want is for the car to be fixed and returned so you can resume your regular, ordinary, routine.

I have a pediatrician friend who was considering semi-retirement. He had been to the doctor to have a small lump checked out and was assured everything was okay. He and his wife took a vacation and when they returned home, the lump was still there. A second trip to the doctor resulted in extensive testing and the horrific diagnosis of bone cancer that had metastasized. Suddenly there was nothing ordinary about his life and as he began to fight for his life, the only thing he wanted was ordinary. God has been good and this friend has since returned to work on a part-time basis. I asked him how it felt to be back to work and his response was very revealing. He stated that it felt better than it had for the last 10 years he had worked. There is nothing more precious than ordinary if you have had it taken away from you.

I learned about ordinary the hard way when I suffered an injury several years ago that completely disrupted my life for about 2 ½ months. I was unable to walk for long distances and had to use one of those motorized carts in the grocery store. I hated it with a passion; I couldn’t wait to walk through the store again and be ordinary like everyone else. I hated being different and I gained a whole new appreciation for the gift of ordinary.

We take so much for granted and are so quick to react when we believe we have been wronged. We don’t take stock of what we do have or of how miraculous it is that we can live ordinary lives. Do you realize that each day is a gift; that the ability to get out of bed every day is far from ordinary? The ability to walk out the door every morning and go to a job you might not even like very much is far from ordinary. Ask the homeless who have no door to walk out of; ask the unemployed who would give anything to have a job – any job – even if they don’t like it. Ask the paraplegic who cannot walk. What about the mentally ill person who desperately wants to lead an ordinary life; no matter how hard they try, they cannot do just the ordinary.

All of us lead ordinary lives, for the most part. We work each day, raise our families, run our errands and one day runs into another – nothing special happens. Seasons come and go, we get older and time slips through our fingers. We miss the most important part of our lives because we think the ‘special’ events are what gives our life meaning. God is the God of details (my accountant brain can truly appreciate God’s attention to detail) and His blessings, His guiding, His abundance are found in the details.

Take the time to thank God for the ordinary whether you feel like it or not. Do it faithfully and I can promise you there is a new level of gratitude in store for you. It is a deeper level of faith, it is a truly thankful heart (Psalm 34:8 ‘O taste and see that the Lord is good.’). As one who has recently come into this deeper level, I can tell you there is no higher ‘high’ in the world. Nothing can compare to what God can give you when you truly ‘ask, seek, knock’(Matthew 7:7-8).

And after you have read this article, thank God for the wastebasket you have that you can toss it into; thank God that you have such an abundance that you even need that wastebasket. Never, never lose sight of how special ordinary is….

Copyright © February, 2002– Cindy Amelung. All rights reserved.


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