Sermon: Ordinary does not mean Insignificant
This week was our first week of Ordinary Is Not Insignificant. Michael Bailey led us through a sermon about how normal people are a big part of the Kingdom of God from Matthew 5:13-16. Here is a quick recap of this week’s Gathering:
Our culture is obsessed with this idea that new is better. That if you are not extraordinary you are irrelevant. We’ve all either consciously or subconsciously decided something - that if something is ordinary it’s insignificant. We have a belief if it isn’t extraordinary it doesn’t matter all that much.
The problem is the vast majority of us really are just simply ordinary. Which leaves us feeling one of two ways:
1. Like we’re never quite doing enough. That we should be doing more. Trying harder. Doing better and bigger. That if I get sucked down into ordinary or routine, then I’m wrong.
2. Or we just accept the ordinary and resign ourselves to leave God’s work up to the paid professionals and people who can afford to live radically. Because we have focus on what’s in front of us, even if that means that we don’t get be a part of something “significant.”
2 Reasons Why Ordinary ≠ Insignificant
1. God’s Kingdom Doesn’t Work that Way
We often fall into conventional thinking that God’s big mission and purposes must demand big, extraordinary actions, but that’s not how things work. A quick survey of God’s involvement throughout human history will quickly show us that he’s always been making the ordinary significant.
For example, in the expanse of the galaxy, we’re here in this small solar system on a rather insignificant planet. On this planet, in the OT we see that God chooses Israel, the smallest and most ordinary, nondescript nation.
Jesus says this is how it works... that in His kingdom, the “smallest of all seeds” will leave a lasting impact much larger than expected. And that “smallest of all seeds” actually includes you and your ordinariness. Everyone plays a part and In God’s Kingdom, the everyday stuff of life matters. This means your ordinary is significant.
2. The Gospel Frees Us to be Ordinary
Because Jesus died on the cross and rose again, he gives us his righteousness. There is no more ‘try harder’. There is no more ‘do better’. There is no more ‘do more’. There is only ‘it has already been done’. We no longer have to feel enslaved to the need to prove ourselves.
To be the light and salt of the world does not require one to do drastic things. The world does not need more Christians believing they have to go do some big and bold thing for the Kingdom - though those things are certainly good. Rather, real salt and light are the outcomes of ordinary lives lived in rich communion with God. Our world, and our community, desperately needs more of those.
Instead, you are free to be ordinary. You’re free to be ordinary to the glory of God.