This past Sunday I had the opportunity to preach at a nearby church. One of the songs we sang was Bill Gaither’s Because He Lives. While singing it, I began to think about the first line of the chorus. Gaither writes, because He lives, I can face tomorrow. So when is tomorrow? It could be construed as some unforeseen day in the future, but for me, while sitting in church, I began to think about tomorrow being a Monday.
Monday. What is exciting about a Monday? True, Monday could be a day full of thrills but reality tells me that it will just be another day filled with routine. Staff meetings, creating “to do lists,” driving kids to school, sending emails, returning phone calls, working out, eating meals, and relaxing with family before bed. Some fairly ordinary stuff accompanies my Mondays.
So where does the resurrection fit in to all of this? Shouldn’t the resurrection push us to something bigger than watering the grass? Shouldn’t we be saving the world? Because He lives, I can face the mundane? That doesn’t sound very grandiose and yet while singing this Gaither song on Sunday morning, that’s what I was thinking about. Monday was headed my way.
The reality is that most people (actually I think all people) live ordinary lives. And for some this is a problem. There is a reason that TV shows such as American Idol are popular. We want to escape the humdrum days into a life of adventure. We are on a search for significance and think that the treasure of importance can only be found by doing something “big.” But is this true?
“What if ‘bigness,’” writes Michael Kelley in his book Boring, “is not an accurate measure of significance? What if the whole idea of ‘ordinary’ is a myth? And what if a life of great importance isn’t found by escaping the details but embracing them? What if God actually doesn’t want you to escape from the ordinary, but to find significance and meaning inside of it?”
The resurrection speaks a different word to us. The daily mundane activities are no longer just things to check off on our “to do list.” God is alive and working. He is beyond the mundane. Therefore, writes Kelley, “there really is no such thing as ordinary when you are following an extraordinary God.”
Paul, at the end of 1 Corinthians 15, which is an incredible chapter on the truth, validity, and implications of the resurrection, writes: Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in in the Lord your labor is not in vain.
Because Christ has risen, continue plodding along knowing that what you do is not in vain. Your work and life while following Christ, though it may appear ordinary, will not be without purpose. “The reality of the future,” writes David Garland, “colors the reality of the present.”
So because He lives, I can face a Monday and every day knowing that because I serve a risen Lord, life is beyond ordinary!