Just Another Manic Mundane.
Had a great catch up with a friend this week that I had not had a chance to chat with for a few years. Some of that may have been choice, most of it the taking of different roads in life. But I love Dave Vaughan. We may be finding a place of connection in the boundaries somewhere, the rejected heretics club, but such a sense of Oneness in our hearts and thought processes and journeys. It was fantastic to share those stories together, this time not to establish ministry or promote our gifting’s but just because we share a wandering journey through life and a discovery of the glory of humanity and life itself. We shared about the bliss of just being alive and living and life itself. That God is the God of the seeming mundane. I say seeming because when we allow Him to envelop everything then nothing is truly mundane, not even the mundane. I remember once reading that the mundane can be our most productive moments with God. It is during those times of having a bath or mowing the lawn or doing the dishes or walking or doing a repetitive job that we do not need to be distracted by concentration but we can allow our minds to wander elsewhere. How often is it said that you can have an eureka moment while laying in the bath? If that is the case we all need to seek our own corner of mundane and stop crowding our lives out with stuff.
New Moon on Mundane.
When I first found myself as a shelf stacker I was pretty miffed with God that I had to lower myself to do such a menial task. Talk about pride. How could I go from the pulpit to the shop floor in such a short space of time? Every night the same old, same old. Although through the early days I worked a variety of aisles for the past three to four years I have worked the same aisle every night. Mundane. As many of my lovely colleagues will say ‘same shit, different day’. But there was a point where something clicked and I began to see the blessing and the glory on all this. The process may be mundane if I allow the process to be the main reason why I am there, but there came a point where I thought I do not get paid to stack shelves I get paid for life. It was like a beam of moonlight hit the aisle and I realised the privilege I had of having all this time where I can think, contemplate, reason, journey in my mind. Some may want to call it prayer, but whatever it is called I love allowing my mind to explore all things. That does not mean I spend 24/7 thinking Scripture and God stuff but I think about life for the living and life for the loving, and I just happen to believe that God is wrapped up in it all. The mundane has been the most productive place where I have ever dwelt. All of these blogs are birthed in the canned veg aisle. Some of you may think I am thinking too much then, lol. But this place of the mundane is a rich mine to be hewn. A deep crying out to deep place. A place of refreshing, battles, counting scars, loving on people. A place of creativity and exploration. Amazing how eight hours flies by when you love the journey within and the relationships of a glorious humanity without.
I have soon realised that church life is always chasing the next big thing. Always about the exciting and vibrant. Always about atmosphere and hype. Build bigger, panoramic visions, striving to get somewhere else better than this. The problem with that is it disconnects from where the overwhelming majority of the people actually are, right here in the right now. I think the church spends too much time and energy on what we can become and it needs to invest more into where we are right now and who we are right now. Bigger, better, but what about living life is better. If only we could create a place of happy mundane then we would transform communities at a huge level. It is always the perspective of climbing the ladder and bettering yourself, but what about seeing the glory of the present you. That place of same old, same old is actually a glorious place of incredible connectivity and creativity. Many of us become snobs as we look down our noses at the road sweepers and bin men and shelf stacker’s of this world, but these amazingly creative people keep our world spinning round. Those office workers, the factory people who do the same thing day in and day out, what would we do without them? How can we connect them to the mundane in such a way as to connect them to life? I love my job. Even my wife Allison finds that hard to believe. Yes I have my times when I get fed up and tired and irritable but welcome to life. This is not some perfect ministry position created by man for man, this is graft. But a place of mundane encounter with the endless possibilities of glorious creativity. A place of standing amongst and with the people we say we love. I just have to say mundane, mundane, so good to me.