Mundane Sanctity

September 28, 2010


Four of the last twenty-six of my life have been spent in a home with a dishwasher.  That’s twenty-two months of living with people who may or may not have shared the loathing of piles of dirty dishes instilled in me as a child.  Many an evening I have spent over a tub of hot bubbly water, cycling the dishes through washing, rinsing and drying (though I prefer a good air-dry).

The interesting thing is that only recently have my dish washing ventures become something more purposeful.  I’m fairly certain this sounds trite, but I swear to you that the last couple times I’ve done dishes it has actually cause me to think about who Jesus has made me to be.  Weird huh?

Yesterday’s hot and humid weather (October?  Really?), was spent sanding the dresser we’re refinishing.  I may have been coated in dust, but I’d spent a good portion of the time thinking about beautifying the world and the redemption of broken things.  Weird.

It would be really cool if the last couple paragraphs had been brought you Sesame Street style by the letter My-Name-Is-Joey-and-I-Rock, but you ask anybody who is close to me and they’ll let you know that’s not the case.

Instead, I think it’s just Jesus working his gloriously holistic Gospel out in the routines and rhythms of life.  What a thrillingly mundane way to save the world–by redeeming not just the grandiose and glorious, but the monotonous grind of everyday living of which our lives are composed.

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2 Responses to “Mundane Sanctity”

  1. KatieO Says:

    I read a book awhile back, “An Altar In the World” by Barbara Brown Taylor, that has many stories such as yours. It was so affirming and comforting and challenging to me…..because I think that I use to think (and maybe sometimes still think) that the only way to really live for God is if I’m part of some WILD, WORLD-CHANGING ADVENTURES….like rescuing forced sex workers in Nepal or something or being a part of some foundation that works to save the poor and destitute. But Barbara taught me a lot in her little book…she challenged those notions and encouraged me to worship and believe in Jesus by being PRESENT…when I’m washing the windows, pulling weeds in the garden, shoveling snow…whatever. That is my altar of worship to God…no more or less holy than someone performing a more lofty task, while believing and serving the same God. Good book 🙂 Even if a bit loosey-goosey at times.

    • joewulf Says:

      @KatieO I love the way Alan Hirsch connects that kind of living to the Lordship of Jesus. He says something like: Because Jesus is Lord over everything, everything in my life gets offered back to him (which is, incidentally, Hirsch’s definition of worship–“offering God’s world back to him”). So simple and so driven by the Gospel. Not to multiply quotes, but it makes me think of Derek Webb’s song “Beloved”
      “Beloved there is nothing more
      No more blessings and no more rewards
      But the treasure of my body and blood
      Given freely to all daughters and sons”


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