January 8, 2022

Looking for Christ in the Ordinary


John 1:14


Sometimes the hardest part of a journey is just after you begin – when things become routine, when the novelty wears off, when the celebrations for having begun the journey have ended – but you still have a long, long, long way to go. This is precisely the place we are called to, in a place after the celebration, when we return to the routine. It is here that we are asked to find God.  

In a post from the Upper Room, Sarah Parson’s reflects: 

I don’t normally see Christ in my everyday life. Even when I look carefully, even when I try to conceive of Christ in abstract terms, the days look pretty drab and ordinary…

Christmas says Christ is here, born into the world. Epiphany says it’s up to us to find him, and it may not be easy. We may have to walk a long road, follow strange guidance, and encounter Herod-like dangers. Epiphany celebrates humankind’s accomplishment of a very difficult task. Christ’s birth is a miracle indeed, but it’s possibly a still greater miracle that we, the earnest yet ever-benighted human race, manage to recognize him, tiny and humble, lying in a barn in some no-name town.

Epiphany calls me to step up my theological reflection a notch. When I expect Christ to enter my day with lots of fanfare and, at the end of the day, bemoan that “nothing happened,” I wonder if I am getting Christ wrong somehow. Christ originally entered the world in pretty ordinary human style, even more humbly than most humans do.

At the same time, the magic of Christ is that love became incarnate here, that we are promised abundant life, triumph over death. Those concepts seem so abstract, too lofty to apply to one day in one small life.

Yet Christ is precisely that point at which the divine and human intersect, where God meets us in our mundane daily reality. This is one of the most beautiful insights of Christianity: that God comes into our place, with all its ordinariness. Our God is willing to live through our boring days with us.

Epiphany celebrates not only that God chooses to do this, but that one day we woke up and noticed it. May we wake up to this fact again and again, experiencing one glorious Epiphany after another.

For more from Sarah’s reflection, see her post “Epiphany – Looking for Christ in the Ordinary”


  • How can you look for Christ in the ordinary? How can you help others to do the same?


  • What does it mean to look for God in ordinary things? What do you see around you that is amazing or beautiful? 


Dear Lord, help me to see you in the ordinary things. Teach me to look for Your gifts and signs of Your love all around me. Help me to notice you in the ordinariness, and when I do, help me to see that this ordinary is beautiful. Amen.