How’s this for motivation? Be ordinary.

November 2013 (50 of 51)


Me. Second-day hair, garage sale shirt with a paint stain on it, putting up ornaments. Totally boring.

A few days ago I read a post written by my friend Megan about how she gained 1,000 blog followers in 6 months. I’ll be honest, she does intentional blogging far better than I do. I can barely muster the time and energy to write most days! I always find myself using rare down time doing the million things I’ve laid aside during the waking hours. (But I plan to be back here soon — I’ve missed you!)

Megan said something that I’ve seen many times but always seems to strike a chord with me: find your “why.” I’ve seen it as “find your voice,” “know your audience,” “find your calling,” “discover your purpose,” etc. The message is the same — find out what it is you want to people to identify (or label) you.

I’ve always struggled with this thought because I’ve always wanted something extraordinary. I always wanted fame, or popularity, or some sort of fantastic recognition for something that is new and exciting. That’s what the world puts out, right? It’s not enough to be ordinary, we must be extraordinary. We need to live our “best life now.” So what if I’m a good cook/writer/photographer/mom/superhero? I want to be the best. 

As you can see, it’s pretty much an impossible role to fill but we are told everyday that the best strives for these things. We need to have dreams, be stars, set goals, be intentional, etc. We should never stop striving for what we want.

So I prayed to God to show me who I should be. Should I pursue music and strive to sing for a living? Should I hone my love of writing to pen the next great American novel? Should I open a store of handmade goodies (that WILL make it to the big-time)? What, God? What do you want to do to make me awesome?

You know what I heard?

Be ordinary. 

Just live your life. Love your kids. Wash your dishes and try new foods. Say please and thank you. Teach your children manners. Try to get some sleep. If you want to try something new? Do it. If you want to get into the most glorious of routines? Knock yourself out.

The truth is, the world needs more ordinary. It needs people who are willing to wake up each day and do the hard work it takes to live life. The Bible is made up of stories about people who made giant strides in setting up the tale of the Gospel. It also had average, ordinary people who just lived a life faithful. There were also people between the pages of the Bible, who never made it in black type onto the pages. I don’t know that for sure, but I think so. There are people who never make it into a magazine or newspaper or internet sensation, and yet they weave colorful threads into the tapestry of life.

The pressure is off, folks. No more trying to be the next big thing. It’s nice.

I’m starting to believe that this is my “why.” To be ordinary. To show people who had a rough childhood or obstacles in their life that it’s possible to live a blessed and content life in the average every day. Maybe our big goal was to get out of the weeds and to just rest by stream. We don’t necessarily have to climb the mountain.

It’s about accepting grace and living in light of it.

It may propel you into the public eye (much like Duck Dynasty — those people are home town!), but it most likely won’t. And that’s okay. It’s no less faithful.

Be ordinary today. Go out there and be wonderfully you. (Note I didn’t say normal. I’m far from normal.)

Do you think you have a “why”? What is it? 

More about April

2 thoughts on “How’s this for motivation? Be ordinary.

  1. Megan Card

    I love you, dear friend. I want to be ordinary with you! I’ll be honest, suddenly (and unexpectedly) gaining so many followers left me feeling behind, far out of my comfort zone, and struggling with the notion that I needed to be something greater in the eyes of my readers. I felt like I was lacking in so many areas. I’m quickly learning that as long as I stay focused on my “why” and write what I am passionate about, people will stick around.Just continue to be YOU. That’s why people start following you in the first place. They fall in love with you 🙂

    1. April McGrew

      I love you too! That’s why I love reading your blog too! You DO strive to remain where the Lord wants you and I like watching you grow in that!

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