by Peter Ashwell
from Signs of the Times No 52 - Jan 2014

This is an interesting and reflective read which led me to parts of the Bible to which I had not previously paid attention.

The author is well known as a theologian and biblical scholar and in this book she wants to remind the reader of the importance of worshipping and glorifying God all the time, not just on Sunday in church.

The author points out that 'Ordinary Time' in the church calendar lasts 33 weeks of the year and whilst it has the potential to be the soggiest season it is available, if we use it well, to let us balance, understand and celebrate more fully the festival times like Christmas and Easter.

The book’s main message is that God calls us just as we are, ordinary, everyday Christians and summons us onwards into extraordinariness. The author encourages and guides the reader to be able to savour ordinariness and to discern a little more what the spirituality of ordinariness looks like. To do this she uses 33 biblical passages which involve ordinary people:

  1. finding time to be distracted from their routines and finding God
  2. doing ordinary things in their lives which have unexpected and extraordinary impacts
  3. seeing God in the beauty of holiness rather than the special places they create for Him.

Readers could read one of these passages each week of Ordinary Time or, as I did, read the entire book (just 134 pages) and then go back and spend more time on individual passages.

Everyday God: The Spirit of Ordinary Time by Paula Gooder is published by Canterbury Press, ISBN 9781848251168.