Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Seeking and Finding the "Ordinary" God


Please give a warm welcome to my dear friend and fellow blogger, Corinne Rodriguez, as my guest writer today.  Corinne's blog, everydaygyaan.com, is ever inspirational and thought-provoking.  I hope you will visit her there after meeting her here!

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I am always inspired by Martha's writing and her gentle and loving manner.  I'm honored to share my reflections here today as I give special thanks for the gift of Martha's friendship to me. ~Corinne


The shepherds were going about their routine when they were interrupted by the message of Christmas.  "God is with us!" the angels proclaimed.  And, they hurried, just as they were, to find that the message was indeed true.

The Wise Men, too, were probably going about their routine when they saw a star in the East and followed it.  They kept following that star until it rested over the place where God, in the form of a baby, lay.

Most of the Israelites expected the Messiah to be extraordinary.  They longed for a Messiah who would act decisively on their behalf and ease them of their misery.  But, there He was, a helpless babe - like every one of us has been.  His parents were ordinary people, too, and he chose to work as a carpenter.  How could this carpenter-turned-preacher and healer be the Messiah, they wondered?

And, they refused to believe . . .

The most precious part of the Christmas message is Emmanuel - God With Us.  Through the work we are called to do and in our "ordinariness", we can experience God.  It never ceases to amaze me that God is so infinitely interested in the ordinariness and routine of our daily lives.  We don't have to try and reach for God.  He has reached for us.  All we need to do is be aware of His presence.  Right here.  Right now.

I recall the beautiful words of Rabindranath Tagore from his masterpiece, Gitanjali:

He is there where the tiller is tilling the hard ground and where the path maker is breaking stones.

He is with them in sun and shower, and his garment is covered with dust . . .

Meet him and stand by him in toil and in sweat of thy brow.

In this season of Advent, I believe that we are called to become more aware of our Emmanuel, God With Us, today and every day.


29 comments:

  1. I totally admire both you and Corinne very much and look up to. :)

    And a lovely post which suits the holiday season so well.Being aware of Him is surely a blessing we all need to know about!

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    1. Thank you so much, Me. Yes, the knowledge of His presence is truly a blessing.

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  2. Thank you, Me! What kind words you have shared here. And, what an honor it is for me to share Corinne's writing here.
    Blessings to you!

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  3. Corinne - That is certainly a reality we need to embrace. It's in every moment of everyday that we can be still and hear God breathing right beside us.

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  4. Dear Martha - Thank you for having me here. I've been so excited about seeing my post on your precious blog. It is an honor.

    Danny- This is the great truth that keeps me rooted - that I can never go too far away from God's love - He's so close at hand.

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  5. Corinne, beautiful post. Yes, we need to learn to be still and invite him into our hearts. We need to pray each day that he will make us His vessel to do His bidding that day. I pray that both you and Martha are blessed and that God watches over you both and guides you in the direction He has for your lives.

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    1. Thank you, dear Mary, for your prayers - they mean so much . . .
      So glad I could share Corinne's beautiful post here.
      Blessings to you!

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    2. Thank you Mary for your prayers. That God is so close at hand is what keeps me going, everyday.

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  6. Hi Corinne & Martha! It's nice to have two of my favorite ladies under one roof. Today's post was encouraging. I remember when I used to look to the sky and pray, seeking a far away God who looked down on me. But now I pray to a God who is not only with me, but in me. He lives through me as I work and play. He is an ever present help in time of need. He and I are one.

    "In this season of Advent, I believe that we are called to become more aware of our Emmanuel, God With Us, today and every day."

    Amen Corinne! Amen and amen. Sending love to my two soul sisters this holiday season and blessings bountiful. <3

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    1. Thank you, Leah! Yes! He is always there with us if we simply turn to look.
      Love and blessings right back to you!

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    2. It took a guest post on Martha's blog for me to find out that I'm one of your favorite ladies, Leah! ;)

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts. It's amazing how our image of God can change. I like what you say of God living through us in work and play. Just what I believe too!

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  7. Dear Corinne & Martha,

    Thank you so much for this lovely Christmas message. So simple yet profound. I think I'm starting to get into the Christmas spirit now ;-*

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    1. Thank you, Linda! Glad Corinne woke that Christmas spirit in you! Blessings and love!

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    2. Thanks, Linda. The beauty of the Christmas message is its simplicity. I wonder why we complicate it at times. I'm glad it's starting to feel a lot like Christmas! ;)

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  8. Thank you Corinne! God is with us but we just need to reach out to him and recognize him in our ordinary moments in life. Especially during the challenging ones - when anger, hurt and dissapointment arises. God is always with us - just have to remind ourselves of that regularly:)

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    1. Thank you for adding that important line, Vishnu - yes, God is there in our anger, hurt and disappointments. What a difference it would make, if we become conscious of that.

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  9. This was right on time today, for I found myself hoping deep down for something extraordinary. Looking for him in the wondrous. Looking for something magical to happen to ‘make my day.’

    A couple of Sundays ago a friend called to sing the praises of the amazing church service she’d attended that morning. The music, oh the music… And I told her I’d seen him in the dusting furniture, scrubbing toilets, mopping floors, sweeping leaves… And she probably thought I was crazy ;-) But I did feel him with me throughout those moments of humble service, Brother Lawrence style.

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    1. The extraordinary is so much easier to believe, isn't it, Debra? We want the lights and the voice coming through the cloud, when He's right next to us while we're doing our chores! ♥

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  10. True Corinne, sometimes when we get completely occupied with the grand and big picture, we lose out on the small and significant. I have always loved how the angels first appeared to shepherds and not kings and princes and also how he chose a poor inn-keeper's stable to be born. Humility is synonymous with the Christian path of life. And, yes, Emmanuel always dwells within us.

    Thanks for this message, dear Corinne.

    Joy always,
    Susan

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    1. Yes, the significant often makes way for the spectacular, Susan!

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  11. Beautiful thought Corinne. As always, it is a pleasure to read your post.

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  12. Hi Corinne:
    Something in the title of this blog reminds me of a documentary I saw a few years called:
    Oh My God
    With Hugh Jackman narrating, he traveled the world seeking who God was and what he meant to the various religions. An amazing movie. In fact your entire post today resonates with me for the very reason the movie resonated. That God is all things to everyone. What I took most away from the movie is and what everyone Jackman spoke with said is that God is Love.

    Thank you for sharing today and thanks to Martha for allowing you to guest write here today.
    --
    Chris

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  13. I'm glad my post resonated with you.Thanks for sharing about the movie, Chris. I must look out for it.

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  14. Both of you spread joy and inspire so many of us with your often timely posts. Thanks for keep us looking inward and upward.

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    1. Thank you so much, Brenda. I do appreciate your feedback always.

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  15. This is such a beautiful reflection ~ simple, deep and full of hope. I pray that we may be aware of this incredible presence amongst us. Lots of love to you both BSs, Martha and Corinne :*

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    1. Thanks so much for stopping in, Melissa! Glad you enjoyed Corinne's beautiful post.
      Blessings!

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1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ...