Meaning in the Mundane

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Growing up, I spent a lot of time sitting on the green seats of my family’s white 1978 Buick Estate Station Wagon. Throughout my early childhood, my typical day would start with a 20-minute ride to school, sitting next to my twin sister in the back row of our car, looking out the window of the tailgate. Those rear-facing seats always made traffic lights a little awkward. We made this drive six days a week—five days for school and one day for church, back and forth, totaling four hours a week.

We often made stops on the way home from school to grab groceries. Sometimes my mom ran into the store while my four siblings and I remained in the car. Usually, she would be in and out pretty quickly, but occasionally a checkout line would be long, a prescription wouldn’t be ready, or something else would delay her, meaning more time in the car.

As kids, my parents kept us very busy. Piano lessons, sports at the local YMCA, and gymnastics filled our schedule on weeknights. All this running around earned my mom a black and yellow checkered keychain with the words “Mom’s Taxi” written on it. It also meant even more time sitting on the green seats looking out the back window.

Riding around in our car was an ordinary, everyday occurrence for me. Oregon Campus Pastor, Andy Rectenwald, used the word “mundane” to describe these everyday moments. Mundane moments are the humdrum, day-to-day things we do in life, like sitting in a car as we commute to and from work.

Everyday moments like these don’t have to lack excitement or purpose, though. When I think back to my childhood, some of my greatest memories are from that car’s back seat. We had a ton of fun in the car playing games and dreaming about the future. Together as a family, we made our time in the car a meaningful and significant part of our lives.

We all have mundane moments. Things like doing the laundry or the dishes don’t exactly make us jump out of bed in the morning, but they could.

This weekend, Pastor Andy shared that God created us to bring eternal meaning to everyday moments. We can do this when we show up on purpose, stepping into mundane moments with our eyes open, searching for opportunities to connect with God and others.

Moments of eternal meaning don’t have to be big mountaintop experiences; God can use the smallest parts of our day. When we run into the coffee shop, we can take a moment to encourage the barista. When we check out at the grocery store, we can ask the clerk how we can pray for them. When we drive somewhere, we can sing a song of worship. When we do the dishes, we can take time to pray for our neighbors. No moment is too small for God to use, and when you choose to show up on purpose in them, inviting God to be a part of them, you will be amazed at how he can bring eternal meaning to the day-to-day parts of your life.

Romans 11:36
36For everything comes from him and exists by his power and is intended for his glory. All glory to him forever! Amen.

What are the mundane moments of your life?

How can you bring eternal meaning to them?

Read Romans 11:36. What can this verse teach us about every moment of the day.

Next Steps:
Write down ways that you can show up on purpose in your most common mundane moments this week.

Tell someone your plans to turn a mundane moment into an eternal moment.

God, thank you for caring about every moment of our day. I know that you are always at work, even in the mundane. You are always revealing yourself to us and giving us opportunities to point people to you. Open my eyes to these opportunities to connect with you and with others. Help me find the eternal meaning throughout my day-to-day life and use me as I choose to show up on purpose each moment of my day. In Jesus’ name, amen.

This post was written by Ben Bockert. Ben is a proud husband and father of three beautiful daughters. He is honored to serve as the Director of the LivingItOut Bible Study.

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3 replies
  1. Martha Smith
    Martha Smith says:

    Well done Ben.
    Upon reading this I realized I missed an opportunity to ask my favorite Kroger checkout clerk if she’d like me to pray for. Lost opportunities are sad. I’ll be trying harder to live in the moment, every moment to make life more spiritually meaningful. Thank you,

  2. Kathy Hendry
    Kathy Hendry says:

    Thank you for the living it out! It was so meaningful! I’m so blessed to have such a great church family!

  3. Cindy Casey
    Cindy Casey says:

    I loved this… it actually took me to the ‘back seat’ of our car as kids growing up – nobody wanted to sit in the middle on the ‘bump’.
    It is the simple things that are everyday moments that we remember a lifetime. Thank you for the reminder.

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