What are you doing today? Maybe you are teaching your little boy the letter “d”—just like you did yesterday and the day before, and every day for the past week since he’s looked up at you every morning and gasped with dismay, “I forgot my “d”, Mama!” Only twenty-two letters to go. You gird yourself up with the thought.
Maybe you are doing schoolwork—the story of your life, the same thing you have been doing for the past six months, or the past eleven years, for that matter. Essays, algebra, and tests. Repeat. Trying your hardest not to get an “F”, and stretching towards that Christmas break like a marathon runner towards the finish line.
Maybe you are peeling apples like I will be doing—just like yesterday and the day before that, juice dribbling everywhere, all but drowning in the stickiness. Piles of browning peels, a floor glistening with sticky apple juice, arm-deep in it—it’s a glamorous job.
I could be wrong—perhaps you are actually doing something exotic and exciting today, like elephant-riding or parasailing or dolphin-swimming. Yes, there is the possibility you are leaving for your European tour today—there is always possibility after all, but it is far more likely that today you are anticipating just another standard, ordinary Friday. It is far more likely that you are making beds or cramming for that final or practicing for that concert or writing that paper or wiping that baby’s nose for the umpteenth time. The cacophony of possibilities of what you—people from all ends of the globe—could be doing today mounts into one joyous, rowdy symphony—the symphony of Friday, December 2nd, 2011.
And whatever the person next to us is doing today, I am sure it sounds enchanting to us, for that is the sad way of human nature. But I am equally as sure that the very hum-drum that you are doing sounds equally as enchanting to that other person.
“Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So we may boldly say: ‘The LORD is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?’”-Hebrews 13:5-6
So take a moment, lay your routine out on the table next to mine and that of every other person reading this, scan them, and marvel at how un-routine your hum-drum really is. Stare open-mouthed at all of the little candles spread across the table in all the corners of the world, and rejoice in how mighty a light these little candles form when they brighten their corners. Allow yourself to be bowled completely off your feet with the giddy delight of a first-timer at your old hat routine. Revel with me in the privilege that out of all this world, God hand-picked you for today’s assignment. Only you. And God doesn’t do routine assignments—He does pop quizzes, sudden twists, lurking surprises, and extraordinary undertakings, but no routine. No corner-brightening mission is ever routine.
Inner discouragement with boring routine means spiritual blindness to God’s eternal goals. To a casual observer we may just be teaching the letter “d”, doing schoolwork, and working elbow-deep in apples, but God knows and we know that no battlefield is routine.