Edited to update: It turns out that trying to do a “31 days” series with a newborn, a toddler, a kindergardener, and a sleep-deprived brain is just not achievable. And I’m free to be okay with that. If I revisit this series at a later date, I will update with links below.
I’ve been in need of some blogging motivation. I have plenty to report, thoughts to ponder, books to recommend, and yet when I sit down to write with this sleep-deprived brain, I’ve got nothing. So I’ve decided to have another go at this 31 Days thing, actually on time (unlike last year). It’s a challenge to write on one topic every day for the month of October. And since I’ve established that writing is good for my soul, and since I’ve been struggling to, well, write, it seems like a good challenge.
But then there’s the topic selection. If I can’t choose a topic for one blog post, how on earth am I supposed to choose a topic to write on for 31 days?
I’ve been really challenged and encouraged by a series the White Horse Inn did in September on the Ordinary. They started out referencing this blog post, Courage in the Ordinary. Tish Harrison Warren writes:
But I’ve come to the point where I’m not sure anymore just what God counts as radical. And I suspect that for me, getting up and doing the dishes when I’m short on sleep and patience is far more costly and necessitates more of a revolution in my heart than some of the more outwardly risky ways I’ve lived in the past. And so this is what I need now: the courage to face an ordinary day — an afternoon with a colicky baby where I’m probably going to snap at my two-year old and get annoyed with my noisy neighbor — without despair, the bravery it takes to believe that a small life is still a meaningful life, and the grace to know that even when I’ve done nothing that is powerful or bold or even interesting that the Lord notices me and is fond of me and that that is enough.
Since reading those words again makes me get all weepy, I think this is a topic I need to explore. I don’t like the idea of having an ordinary life. In my mind, ordinary has always equalled boring. And yet this is where I find myself, too exhausted to actually fall asleep during naptime, eating Adrienne’s leftover crackers and ignoring the dirty dishes covering my kitchen counters. My life is full of ordinary.
I don’t know what it will look like to explore this topic for 31 days. I don’t have a well-thought-out plan. I hope it will drive me to Jesus and cause me to look away from my circumstances and onto his never-ending grace. I hope it will bring about repentance for all of the idols I have erected in my messy, sinful heart. I hope it will bring a fresh enjoyment and celebration of the mundane moments that make up my days. And I hope it can spark some discussion about what it looks like to follow Jesus in ordinary lives.
So we’ll call this day one.
(Check back for updated links to each day in this series.)