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#ordinarytime,#practicepresence,#spiritualsight,#beloved,#spiritualrhythms,#authentic,#trueself, #brotherlawrence,#spiritualdirection,#enneagram5,#enneagram4,#examenprayer

Have you ever thought, who am I really under all these layers of imposed identity?  I often find that as soon as one layer is removed, I create another layer to replace it. So, what would the invitation be in order to embrace my ordinariness in a world where we are told to excel, perform, and create the dream life, image or career?

What comes to mind for me is revisiting one of my favorite go to sacred texts by -Brother Lawrence, “The Practice of the Presence of God.”  Brother Lawrence experiences God’s presence amid ordinary life, especially doing dishes. Perhaps my dishwasher breaking down recently gave me an opportunity to practice this, even though I didn’t avail myself to it. Instead of using this life situation to practice being present to the Spirit’s presence, I whined about the broken machine- Fail. I guess part of embracing my ordinariness is recognizing that failure is a part of life and using it for a learning and growth opportunity. Instead of beating myself up, like I usually do, perhaps I could realize the reality of failure and be willing to integrate it into my spiritual journey. I could also see through a spiritual grace lens and remember I am beloved and extraordinary to God despite of my failures.

It is easy for me as a 5 with a 4 wing on the Enneagram to fall into the trap of wanting to feel important or unique and to be bored with the ordinary. Of course we are each unique, but a 4 on the Enneagram needs an extra amount of uniqueness and a 5’s biggest fear is of being annihilated or not existing-thus the need to create identity and purpose. Wow, a lot to overcome to embrace ordinariness in everyday life.

I find it interesting that I am sensing this invitation from God to embrace my ordinariness during what is called “Ordinary Time” on the church calendar. Ordinary Time can be the rather uneventful time where we can slow down enough to notice and reevaluate the flow of our lives.

When I experience seasons of invitation or transition, I often find it helpful to try some different Spiritual Practices and Rhythms. The practices calling to me currently are mindfulness or practicing presence through my ordinary days, the Examen Prayer at the end of my day to help me be more aware, and maybe a bit of journaling on my experience. As a matter of fact, I reintroduced the Examen last night and found that I noticed God’s presence in the most unusual place. What ended up standing out for me during my Examen prayer was engaging with a little girl while in line at the store. Of all the moments of my day, the Holy Spirit highlighted that moment. The Examen helped me notice something special in my ordinary day. As I shared this with my spiritual director today, the Spirit highlighted something else I had forgotten. The little girl had a mask of a super hero she was putting on and off. Wow, what a revelation about embracing my authenticity and ordinariness by removing the masks of my false self. So much can be gleaned from the spiritual practices of the Examen and Spiritual Direction.

As I sink into this Ordinary Time for myself, I invite you to be open to notice your ordinary days and discover the freedom to just be. If you could use some support on your Spiritual Journey, feel free to contact me for a complementary 30-minute zoom chat to see if you might benefit from Spiritual Direction or Coaching with Soul’s Sanctuary.


Peace and Joy for your Journey,

Carol Mullen




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