By Fr. Dennis Chriszt, C.PP.S. 

The liturgical calendar tells us that this is Ordinary Time,

but this year, nothing is ordinary.

We live in times unlike any other,

with the corona virus and everything that comes with it.

We have not gathered in any ordinary ways in a long time.

Everything is extraordinary at this time,

and yet we are getting used to it all.

 

Elijah lived in extraordinary times.

He was being hunted by enemies great and small

for simply delivering God’s messages.

He was hiding in a cave,

and when God told him to expect an appearance by God,

Elijah expected the extraordinary.

He would not have been surprised

if God showed up in a mighty wind,

an earthquake or great fire.

One expects God to show up in extraordinary ways,

and so did Elijah.

But what was extraordinary was that God showed up

in a tiny whispering sound,

in a gentle breeze,

in what could be considered an ordinary way.

 

The disciples had just witnessed the extraordinary feat

of Jesus feeding over 5000 people

with just a few loaves of bread and a handful of fish.

They had seen how what started as a small basket full

ended with twelve baskets full of leftovers.

And yet, when they saw him walking on the water,

there were terrified.

They had seen extraordinary things time after time,

yet they never got used to how extraordinary this Jesus really was.

They never quite believed that they could do extraordinary things, too.

Peter took a chance.

He got out of the boat,

walked on the water,

and then realized that it was impossible to walk on water,

and so began to sink.

The had already seen the impossible

time and time again,

But still he couldn’t quite come to believe

that like Jesus he was called to be extraordinary.

 

Today,

in these days,

when things seem to be anything but ordinary,

God reminds us to look for an appearance,

not in extraordinary things like wind, earthquake or fire,

and at the same time,

Jesus reminds us that extraordinary things are possible

if we remember who it is who calls us.

Today,

we can find God is simple ordinary things,

like a quite whispering sound,

and at the same time,

we can do extraordinary things

as long as we remember the One who calls us to do them.

 

So, in this Ordinary Time

that is anything but ordinary,

let us look for God in the simple things

that come our way,

but let us also see Christ

in those extraordinary actions of those who follow his example,

and let us join in doing extraordinary things

because we know the One who does them in us

and in all who do good in these extraordinary times.

It may be a simple as wearing a mask

or as extraordinary as helping a stranger in need.

Either way,

it is the presence of God in our midst.

To view the full scripture reading, click here.

 

Fr. Dennis Chriszt

 

Fr. Dennis Chriszt, C.PP.S., is the director of advanced formation for the Missionaries of the Precious Blood. He also directs Precious Blood Parish Missions (pbparishmissions.org).