I'd say most of the time, this is a pretty true statement! We are all different. 'Normal' also looks different for each of us, not only Maxine!
I have never felt like my life was anything out of the ordinary, and yet... what I am seeing is how many ways I have been blessed, and many of them have been out of the ordinary, different from someone elses 'normal'.
When I was growing up, I didn't think our life was anything unusual, but looking back, I see it so differently. My mom and dad were... 'my mom and dad'. And now I see how special that really was! Maybe it's that way with most of us, we see so much more as we go down the road.
Our everyday life was full of the spiritual 'heroes' of the day, it was our normal. To us... they were just our family friends. Now... I am reading their books and studying the treasures that God taught them, and seeing with fresh eyes that our 'friends' were extraordinary!
And... I am seeing in a clearer way that there is a responsibility that is mine because of all that I was taught and lived through during those growing up years.
"To whom much is given, much will be required"...
So...what does God's normal look like?
Because as different as we may all be, how we were raised, the choices we have made, our temperaments, and our journeys in life...even though our normal's may differ, and even though He created each one of us to be a unique person...
God's standards remain the same for every one of us!
He has made it clear what our lives should look like...His Word spells it all out... and that normal is not always how my life looks, but I want it to, just like you do.
... one day at a time
... one choice at a time
... one 'heaven turned' heart prayer at a time
... one step of faith at a time
... one obedient decision to 'stand on truth I already know' at a time
And the list goes on...
The bottom line is that I want my normal to line up with His standards! He's already given me all that I will ever need to do that....
One of my favorite verses, and I've quoted it before..."If ye KNOW these things, happy are ye if ye DO them!" (KJV) John 13:17
My "normal" was very different from yours, but somehow we have ended up with very similar "world-life views".
I guess that shows that God's standards do true us up, wherever we came from, as long as we desire to become more and more like Him.
Whenever I hear about a "normal" life, I always remember the quote from Babara Johnson, who wrote, "Normal is just a setting on your clothes dryer." :)
But god's standards are a "plumb line" according to the prophet, and He is always the same, yesterday, today and forever.
Good post! ...Marsha
I was just reading this morning in my quiet time, about God's plumb line. That's the little doo-hickey that carpenters use to make sure that things are straight. God has given us His "normal" through His Word - as you have so wisely pointed out.
The challenge is following...
Yes, you are soo right here. My "normal" couldn't have been more different from yours growing up. WAY different...And yet, through God and His standards and His ways our "normals" now line up much better. = )
I like this, I am thankful that God is what is normal. No matter the trials that God has allowed to shape and mold us no matter the life experiences, He gives us the tools to make it through. I think what is good about your life is that it gives me encouragement that God gave you something that is different from my growing up years but that God was still the same, yesterday, today and forever.
What I love about your life is that you knew people that I love and that we read the same books and we can still be family because of our Father and that is so exciting.
I hope your having a fabulous weekend!
I love the statement "What is Normal,?" because who sets the bar for normal?. However; sadly, the dictionary defines normal as " Free from any mental disorder; sane. I'm so thankful that our Beautiful Savior, looks at our hearts, and not our state of mind :o)
To me, normal is not a state of the mind, but it's a matter of the Heart, which then directs our thoughts On-to, or Away from Gods "Normal"
which I think is His will for our lives.
I've lived what most people would consider an Abnormal life, but when I look back I see an "Extraordinary God," that was with me every day of my life.
I really like your list of God's standards, and your right it applies to all.
If God has blessed you with wonderful parents and a special childhood, he for certain hasn't done that in vain.
You are a good keeper of his gifts and talents; keeper here equals sharer.
His blessings are given thousand generations to those who fear his name.
I know for sure I have had four Christian grandparents and parents as well( obviously just two).
I know I am being blessed every day.
My mother always told me I was abnormal and I should be normal like the rest of the kids. I never could quite get the hang of it? Now God's normal is very appealing to me. My spirit is willing but my abnormal flesh is oh so weak :-(
Great blog! I'm a new follower.
Yes...and you are pouring out your riches on so many of us and others. God's story on each our lives is a page of History...yes, His Story...and mine looks different than yours, but it is still His Story of my life. Thanks so much for sharing...His Story of your life!
always striving to live up to His standards!
Wonderful blog post, sweet friend! My normal growing up was similar to yours! And for that, I am truly thankful. I love the standards that you've listed. The one that I struggle with more than the others is one day a the time. God is using this standard to teach me more about Him, and I am so thankful!
Sonja, this makes me think of Psalm 139 and how intimately we are known by God. He placed you in the right family for you and, of course, that was normal for you. You have truly been blessed and you use your gifts to bless others. All roads lead to God, we must pray for the children who struggle in difficult families.
Enjoyed this so much. I want my normal to
line up with His word too. And you are so
right. He has already given us all we need.
I love that God's "normal" is always abundant - whatever it's comprised of. And you hit the proverbial nail on the head when you spell it out line-by-line; for truly there's a foundation upon which we build - a little here, a little there. How extra-blessed are we who have parents that showed us how.
I can't think of the term "normal" without thinking about boxes, and how easy it is to pidgeon-hole ourselves and others by some contrived standard. I confess I've spent way, way, way too many days comparing, only to feel like I've somehow missed out (and NOTHING could be further form the truth).
Maxine is my alter ego (especially now that she's quick smoking, as did I some 25 yrs ago). She's just so ... so very sassy :)
My husband and I joke about "normal" all the time - saying, "We're the only normal people we KNOW!" (Of course, we know it isn't so.)
I ♥ how the Word is a great leveler or plumb line! As we grow increasingly like the Lord Jesus (or/and as He increases IN us) we experience a "NEW normal" - and it's all GOOD!
My grandma quoted the two verses that you shared today, over and over again. I could hear her quoting them as I read this post. I am sure all of her 8 children and many grandchildren would agree with me. Loved that you shared this today, and I too, am not sure what "normal" is in my world, but you would not fit in the category:).
Whoo, normal, eh? I'd have to say I'm pretty abnormal. (I stole that from Paul). But...I am faithful, in my own abnormal way!
Your life was everything but normal Sonja! You have such a rich Christian heritage and yet I hear what you're saying. That's all you knew and yet now you're realizing so much more about these godly people.
I believe you are being obedient to share with us on your blog. You've blessed many, including me. I thank you for that. You have been a wonderful friend to me and I thank you for your prayers. Please continue sharing with us. I for one, will be standing by.
BEAUTIFUL, BEAUTIFUL SONJA!!! Thank you for coming to leave me such a heartfelt and wonderful comment. It really does make my day to have sweet people like you come by and when I can read these comments during my lunch break at work, it is all the more special. Oh....work is so stressful, but your message is clear. In what I do, I must always go by God's standards. The world gives us standards to go by and all we can do is our best to meet the ever-increasing standards. But when we become so weary, as I am now, all we can do is the NORMAL in God's view. I hope, NOOOOO....I KNOW that if I do what He wants me to do, He will give me the energy to do my work to the best of my abilities, and that is all one can ask.
THANK YOU DEAREST!! Have a wonderful evening, Anita
well, all i know is that 'normal' for Him is really
hard for ME to do! thank you for calling us to
His higher standard!
I'm so glad that I got up early this morning so get caught up on blogs. I love this for more reasons than I care to list. I love that you set the standard for normal in HIS Word and not that of the world. I love what some commenter said above about it not having to do with a state of mind.
I'd rather be a peculiar person normal by HIS standards than any normal thing in the world.
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