Ordinary Time – Season of Stability

 January 14, 2017

What is so ordinary about Ordinary Time? An ordinary day? Is there ever truly such a thing? Each moment of each day is fraught with so much potential and yet we fritter away those moments, unaware of all that surrounds us.

There is nothing that is ordinary in God’s eye. All of creation is touched by the hand of God and shines forth that reality, if we are only open to it. Each day we touch the face of God in the ordinary wonder of life, the song of a bird, the smile of a child, a lover’s kiss, the hot-flash of mid-life, and the last breath of a live well-lived. All of this is the “stuff” of life and it is full of God’s promise. There is no ordinary day or ordinary person. God is present in all of the ordinary aspects of our days; God is present in each of us. This makes us extraordinary.

Far too often in our churches we neglect the ordinary. So much of our energy is spent on the “big” celebrations of the year, Advent/Christmas, Lent/Easter, yet most of our life is lived in Ordinary Time. How little we know how to appreciate this time and live it well! How little we appreciate the wonder of ordinary life, an ordinary day, an ordinary person.

I relish the ordinary, stable times of my life when I am not planning for any big celebration or coping with any major crisis. In the roller coaster of life, I welcome these stretches of flat land. It’s a relief to be able to just live each day as they come. But the stable times in your life do not automatically mean stagnation. They can be wonderful times for long range planning, dreaming dreams, planting seeds for future change, and just getting the job done. These cannot be done in the midst of major changes and disruptions.

Ordinary times are wonderful, important times in raising children. They are times for learning and teaching, developing and perfecting skills that will help them later in life. These are times that can give them a sense of stability, security and discipline that will sustain them as adults. They can be times to focus on what is truly most important; times for deepening, living life to the fullest, not just coping or surviving. They provide fertile ground for spiritual growth.

The greens of this season reflect this growth, the green of the grass and the leaves all around us, rich and plentiful. There are also a number of wonderful feast days to be celebrated during this time, just as we celebrate birthdays.

The Catholic Church sets aside two stretches of each year as part of ordinary time: one during the winter and a longer stretch during summer and fall. During this time the priest wears green vestments and altar cloths are green. The length of the season reflects the reality that most of our life is spent in ordinary life.

May this selection of meditations on the ordinary in our lives help you to grow in your appreciation of that which is stable and secure in your life. May they lead to deeper growth in your spiritual life and help you put down roots in that which is truly most important and life giving for you.


This post is part of a series of reflections on the Church year. Click here to follow blog

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