“Wrecked for the ordinary.” It’s a phrase I came across this morning. That’s the best phrase I’ve come across recently that describes the emotional and spiritual condition I experience when returning home from missionary work in Mexico. This condition is equal parts deep dissatisfaction with the status quo of the typical “American Dream” lifestyle, and a longing for something more real, more engaging, and more alive.
Don’t get me wrong – I like (clean) running water, air conditioning, and a comfortable bed. I appreciate working stoplights, smooth paved roads, and effective sewer systems. There are many things about a first-world lifestyle that are ordinary and comfortable for me. A toothbrush, easy and available transportation, a basket full of clothes, a washing machine, chocolate milk…
Yet what is truly disturbing is the ordinary way in which so many of us, as Americans, approach life; as if it were a box to be checked off. “Next!?!”
God has given us an amazing world to live in, and the average person has seen approximately zero percent of it. He has given us the ability to create and build and inspire, yet we watch cat videos and scroll through memes. He has placed in us a soul that longs to connect with those around us, and a spirit that desperately needs connection with Him, yet we isolate ourselves in our big homes, nice cars, and theme park vacations.
We have elevated the ordinary things of life to displace the astonishing, the unexplainable, the awe-inspiring, and the vital things – the real things of life, and love, and relationship with God and others.
Francis Chan writes:
“Have you ever wondered if we’re missing it? It’s crazy, if you think about it. The God of the Universe – the creator of nitrogen and pine needles, galaxies and e-minor – loves us with a radical, unconditional self-sacrificing love. And what is our typical response? We go to church, sing songs, and try not to cuss. Whether you’ve verbalized it yet or not, we all know something’s wrong. Does something deep inside your heart long to break free from the status quo?”
The short answer is: Yes. I want to break free from the status quo. I want my response to the God of the Universe to be genuine, to be passionate, and to accept and reflect His love for me, and His love for those around me.
I am wrecked for the ordinary. I want you to get wrecked, too.