{Romans 12:1-2. The Message} So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life — your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life — and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for Him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what He wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.

Okay – first – hi-five the screen right now if your May has been insane. You guys, what is up with May?! It is the craziest month. Also, isn’t the bible hard sometimes? Ha. That’s a little bit how I’m feeling right now.

I can so easily fail at all these things. And add in chaos and life and my vision gets blurry and I am walking around losing sight of what really matters. I can look at those magazine stands in the store and feel like I should look like that model on the cover or be in shape like that 20-something year old. I see the well decorated homes and cool cars and to-die-for vacation spots and I want to be like the Jones’s. I do. But, I’m not. And the minute those things consume my mind and matter more than the life I’m living out today – then I have a problem. And my vision is blurred. And focus is out of line. There is nothing wrong with the beauty and houses and cars and holidays….until those are the only places we find our meaning. And when those are the only things we are living for.

Going against the flow is not always easy. Saying no is not always easy. Being content with what I have is not always easy. Loving is not always easy. Giving and putting others first is not always easy.

Finding our value and worth and meaning in Jesus…is not always easy.

But when we do…life is more meaningful. The ordinary days given to a God who walks them with us are extraordinary. They may not be earth shattering or make the news – and, quite frankly, some days may just seem dull and mundane. But when we take our ordinary and offer it to Jesus – He brings the beauty. Maybe it’s simply in hugging that kid who’s failing math and feeling down. Maybe it’s just making some cookies for the neighbour. Or actually saying hello to that cashier at the Wal-Mart checkout who just needs to know someone cares. Maybe it’s just ordinary, but God takes that and makes the failing feel valued, makes the lonely feel loved, makes the invisible feel worthy.

I have so much to learn about offering up my ordinary and living the way God wants. I need to see the way Jesus sees…rub that blurry stuff from my eyes and the noise from my ears and hear His voice and see His heart.

I have this very dear, Italian friend, named Vilma. She is in her 60’s and is most precious to me. She helps her two adult kids run a restaurant, while maintaining another job and her husband passed away several years ago. The woman never stops and her heart is pure gold and she’d give you her shirt, earrings and probably even her house if she thought you needed it. I asked her one day what her secret was… “Vilma, how do you do it every day? “ And her answer? “I wake up, ask God what He wants me to do today…and then I go do it.”

Vilma gets it. And I want to get it, too. So…that’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to wake up, talk to God first and then go do it.

Let’s do it together, shall we?