What Is Ordinary Time And How Do I Celebrate It?
Ordinary time. It sounds so, well, ordinary. Simple. Plain. But Ordinary Time matters deeply, both in the Church Calendar and in our personal spiritual walks.
Ordinary comes from the same word as ordinal, it is time that matters, time that is to be counted and treasured. It is common, daily time measured in common, daily life that matters deeply to God.
Ordinary Time begins after Pentecost.
The Church is empowered in Acts 2 to go into the world and spread the good news of Jesus. Ordinary Time reflects what that has looked like.Ordinary time. It sounds so, well, ordinary. Simple. Plain. But Ordinary Time matters deeply, both in the Church Calendar and in our personal spiritual walks. Click To Tweet
Traditionally, the season of Ordinary Time is the season where we remember anew the works of the Apostles and the saints that have followed them. As a Protestant, most of my knowledge of Christian history was post-Reformation. Ordinary Time is a season in which I try to dedicate myself to learning about how God has worked in His Church through all time, not just the last few hundred years.
This season, the longest one in the Church Calendar, is a celebration of how our work for God in daily life matters. It is not a season of big events like Christmas or Easter nor is it a season of preparation. It is a season of doing, each and every day, the little things that Christ has called us to do. If the rest of the year is Sunday morning service, Ordinary Time is the moment when we leave the pews and go out into the world, living the life we have been re-commissioned to live.
For me, Ordinary Time is lived out in a few different ways.
Ordinary Time leads me to a renewed vigor for the Great Commission. After Pentecost, I am reminded of the power of the Holy Spirit’s work in my life and how that should lead me to spread the word of God. Ordinary Time reminds me of the call to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all.
Ordinary Time reminds me of the importance of the Church. When the Holy Spirit came, He did not descend upon them independently as individuals, but together, as a united Church. Ordinary Time reminds me of how God equipped us together as a Church and called us to be His Bride. During Ordinary Time, I am reminded that I am not an island but that I’m meant to live out my life in the community of the Church.During Ordinary Time, I am reminded that I am not an island but that I’m meant to live out my life in the community of the Church. Click To Tweet
Finally, Ordinary Time reminds me that other’s have walked this path before me. It is the season that embodies the Hall of Faith laid out in Hebrews 11. During this season, we immerse ourselves in the stories of God’s faithfulness in the lives of those who have gone before us. It is particularly meaningful to me to remember the lives of those who have lived since the time when the canon of Scripture was compiled. While this is not because their lives were more or less valuable than those in Scripture, it helps me realize that ordinary people, not just Biblical heroes, have seen God’s faithfulness.
The saints whose lives were not recorded in Scripture remind me that God is still active in His Church and active in the lives of those who love Him. Ordinary Time is a season where we can stop and recognize that everything we do, we can do unto the Lord.The saints whose lives were not recorded in Scripture remind me that God is still active in His Church and active in the lives of those who love Him Click To Tweet
So recognize this season.
Thank God for His work in the Church and the lives of the saints who have gone before you. Find a book on the saints and read about the lives of Christians you do not know. They aren’t just distant historical figures, they are your brothers and sisters in Christ.
Put up reminders around your home of all that God has done. Think of how you can pass on to those around you and those in the generations to come a legacy of faithful dependence on God. Then, offer each and every moment of your ordinary day in service of the One who paid the extraordinary ransom for your soul.
Let this season be a beautiful reminder, not of the works of men, but of the works of a faithful God who has worked and who continues to work in His Church.