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Friday, November 4, 2011

Ordinary is Okay

As a child in America, we repeatedly hear that we are capable of big things. "You can be the President or an astronaut!" Then as adults, most of us end up living very ordinary lives, working very ordinary jobs. We struggle with a feeling of discontent, because somehow we didn't measure up to the dreams we had for our lives. We keep waiting for the tides to turn and our lives to become extraordinary and for our dreams to come true. We wait for our marriage to magically be like the ones we see on TV, and for our kids to be perfect. We wonder why our house isn't big enough, and our cars rattle and have peeling paint.

Don't get me wrong here, I am not saying that it is wrong to dream. I am simply saying that I have recently been considering that perhaps we have mistaken what is really extraordinary. Somehow we have this idea that it involves the right job and the right house and the right stuff. Maybe it is really found right in the middle of an ordinary life. Maybe the secret to extraordinary is not in pursuing a bigger paycheck, but in pursuing deeper relationships.

Lately I have been watching the people in my life a little closer. I've been thinking about the people that I greatly admire. Most of these people that I would describe as great people are actually very ordinary. They work a nondescript job that pays the bills more months than not. They have families with drama and issues. They slip and fall down along the way, and their names will probably never grace the pages of a history book.

It makes me think that maybe I should focus a little harder on being content with my life and rather than waiting for the "big moment" in life, I should focus on looking for ways to love the people I am with right now. It is time to stop waiting for what's next and time to start living the right now.