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March 15, 2007

What is normal? When it comes to people what do you think of when I say normal? How about with family, what image comes to mind?

I was thinking about normal today and wondering where I get my picture for normal. Can you look in a dictionary and find it? If I want to know what normal is when it comes to family should I look for a picture of a mom and dad, two kids and a family pet? Would the dad be smoking a pipe with his feet up reading the evening paper while mom wears her apron?

Is the best way to find out what normal is to watch Leave it to Beaver reruns? I will tell you this, a dad in a suit isn’t coming through our front door anytime soon. If that picture is normal you will have to count us out. Breakfast of toast and eggs with a cup of coffee in a mug?

What about in the middle ages? What was the picture of normal? Was it dad holding a turkey leg with a blazing fire surrounded by suits of armor? Not many people probably fit into that picture. Family back then was very extended.

We make a big deal about a nuclear family but do we really want families that could cause a chain reaction? The U.S. is working pretty hard to keep nukes out of Iran’s hands. Do we want them in our homes? I don’t know. I was just thinking about this as I dealt with some situations here locally. I found myself attempting to get people to normal. As I drove home I decided maybe that really wasn’t the point.

I was just reading in Matthew with our son and we were going through the names of Jesus family. I was reminded of the questionable characters and questionable relationships that are a part of His family tree.

I started to think about the fact that Jesus was the ultimate step child, a half brother like no other, and I realized that maybe I should worry less about normal and focus on doing what Jesus came to do. Jesus tried to bind up the wounds, to hold them together until our final redemption. Maybe I spend too much time trying to get people to normal when I should be getting them to Jesus instead.

How do we develop our ideas of normal? Is it even appropriate to try to make such assessments? Maybe it is but I think I will spend more time looking for prisoners, the broken because to be honest, I’m not so normal myself.

7 Comments leave one →
  1. Jim Sexton permalink
    March 15, 2007 4:38 pm

    I am not normal.

    Neither are you to tell the truth. There is no normal, never was in fact. Find me any two apostles who were the same. Jesus is our normal, he is the measuring stick and I don’t measure up. Nobody ever has, so in our realization of that, we look around for something we can call normal. We want to be at peace in a world that is in constant turmoil.

    We aren’t the families that came into the industrial age, we aren’t the families that formed the 50’s and we aren’t even the families that we ourselves came out of.

    Each of us has to figure out what God wants and then needs to get about doing just that. Mom, dad, a few kids, a dog or cat and a picket fence came out of Hollywood, not reality. Normal is unobtainable, since neither of us will ever agree what is normal.

    In light of that realization, I need only measure up to God’s son to see where I am and where I need to go. So few people really do that… does that make me normal, or them? Now my head hurts…

    Normally I am not so confusing…

  2. March 15, 2007 7:37 pm

    Normal? Oh my, that is so easy. Of course, I am normal. (lol)

    Grace and Peace,
    Royce Ogle

  3. March 15, 2007 9:24 pm

    When I was in a silly drama group in college, we all had imaginary super powers. One guy had the power to argue people into oblivion, a girl had super hair that would grow or shrink on command to entangle bad guys and another girl had the “super stare” that would melt anybody caught in the line of fire.

    Stupid, I know.

    My super power? Being normal. I was the most normal person who ever existed.

    Anyway, to your post, I think that our limited view of “normal” is harmful. We try to confine people into our “normal” boxes and lose sight of their individuality and special circumstances.

    Thank God that we aren’t called to be normal!

  4. March 15, 2007 10:19 pm

    Todd, How is Wichita? Thanks for stopping by the new blog.

    I like your story that is great. Have any more drama group stories?

  5. March 15, 2007 10:20 pm

    Jim, you more than most probably understand the need to context your ministry.

    Thanks for the thoughts.

  6. March 15, 2007 10:21 pm

    Royce, I have heard that said about you.

  7. March 16, 2007 2:18 pm

    Oh, I’ve got drama group stories out the wazoo. Just you wait.

    Wichita is pretty much the same. You know how it goes.

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