Practical. Transitory. Ordinary.
Mundane life. It is most likely resented because it is not spectacular.
While we encourage each other to stop and appreciate the small things in life, we don’t always mean it. Not really.
We want to be known for doing impressive things — or at least things that are worthy of noticing. We dread being unseen and ordinary. We dread living a mundane existence.
At the root of our ill-will toward mundane activities and mundane living, however, I believe is the annoyance that it is pointless. We begrudge the repetitive nature of the mundane. At least I tend to.
Washed dishes will become dirty again. Gas tanks need to be refilled. Lawns are cut, only to regrow. Weeds in flowerbeds are maddening in their reappearance. Endless stacks of documents need stapling, sorting, or filing. Thousands of phone calls need answering. Years come and go, marked by the same paperwork, the same taxes, the same repairs, the same cleaning and re-cleaning, the same organizing and reorganizing, the same frustrations. Even successes in everyday life can turn mundane.
What has been will be again. There is nothing new under the sun. (See Ecclesiastes 2)
Hopeless, right? The mundane nature of life has created a rut that we cannot escape.
So we look for a plot twist. We find out we’re really royalty (it makes a good movie)… or we come into money… or we finally receive that accolade… or we get our breakthrough to fame. With a plot twist like that we could escape the rut created by a mundane life.
But what if the office worker, the teacher, the mother, the father, and the hundreds of other professions were not necessarily meant to escape mundane life? What if the mundane could be redeemed from pointlessness?
The sovereign purpose of God has given purpose to the most mundane of lives.
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Christ has redeemed the mundane for his followers because all our works are for him. The fulfillment for our work is in him. The honor, gratitude, and advancement we hope to attain in our earthly work pale in comparison to our inheritance in the Lord.
Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
God has planned all our works — the mundane, the noteworthy, and the spectacular. All are unto him. He accepts our work because of Christ. The presence of his Holy Spirit in us reminds us that we do not work for the futility of a passing world, but in his strength and with the hope that our work is not in vain. Therefore…
Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
We work, even in the mundane, with the hope of the only accolade that matters: God’s.
“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!'”
We work with hope and courage to do the ordinary because we know that God is at work — even in the mundane.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.