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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Transcending Ordinary - Ordinary (1)


I often think about life, especially life as a catholic man in this modern world. I have come to believe that there are some exceptional people in the world, but for the most part, most of us are at best ordinary. What do I mean as ordinary? Well, we live inconsequential lives.

But we were not created to be inconsequential. So why is it that so many of us live lives that are not only mundane, but superficial and often shallow? Each day from the time that we awake, we are confronted with options and the need to make choices. These choices are often made with ease and comfort in mind, at least upon first thought. It is exactly at these seemingly insignificant decisions where we chose to be ordinary or not.  It isn't the really big decisions in life that dictates our lives. The big decisions are important, but the reality is that they are actually directed by the hundreds of little decisions that have already been made. When we awake and receive that thought of God or inspiration, do we embrace it and immediately drop to our knees and recognized God for who he is? Or do we shut it off as we walk to turn on the coffee pot? When we shower in the morning and begin to reflect on our developing day, do we focus on our personal desires? Or do we ask God for what he has in store for us? Half way through the day, do we think about developing  the best method of getting our work done? Or do we consider those around us and honestly look at ways to help others with their duties.

We have been conditioned to primarily serve ourselves, maybe also our direct families, but to stay well within the parameters of usual and customary. Acting in a contrary manner, that is anything beyond what would be considered socially typical would leave you wide open for a label such as radical or "off balance." Yet, to be completely human, we are to constantly make decisions in conformity to our unique spirit and not be influenced by others, especially not by the pagans.

As we listen to others and the norms established by the modern culture  we begin to lose our connection with the spiritual world and specifically our uniqueness. We begin to look and act just like everyone else and become ordinary. A Catholic man should not be content with being ordinary, but transcend the temptation for accepting a minimal standard and ascend with God's grace to become extraordinary. Not extraordinary for any self-serving goal, but rather embracing our connection with the heavenly world and responding to our call and fulfilling our destiny here on earth.

We have just begun our exploration of transcending the ordinary and we will travel this journey together in the subsequent chapters. I encourage you to only absorb one chapter a day due to the richness of the information that you will be reading. The content only becomes truly rich as you internalize it and pray with it, asking God to open your mind and heart to the wisdom contained in your Christian soul and spirit.

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