Ordinary people accomplish extraordinary things

Published 2:47 am Wednesday, April 26, 2017

I’m trying not to sound too much like Joel Osteen, but I must say you are extraordinary! Yes, every one of you! I was sitting in church today and did the unforgivable; I turned around to see who was there. I saw everyday people who had performed extraordinary deeds, acted in extraordinary ways, and impacted lives in extraordinary ways. No, I don’t attend a big church in Washington surrounded by statesmen, nor do I attend the church in Georgia where Jimmy Carter and Rosalynn are active. I attend a small church in Andalusia, Ala.

You might ask who these extraordinary people are and wonder if you know them, too. You might know them individually, but for sure you know someone like them.

I see a lady whose family owned a ladies’ clothing store for generations. Her family probably made a respectable living from the shop but this woman dressed young women for marriage, babies for christenings, families for funerals and weddings, and even provided dresses for our deceased mothers before going to their final resting places. Well, you might say, “Well, she was paid for that.” Only monetarily, which I can attest to at this point in life, is only a small part of the picture of this woman. She smiled and laughed with brides, delighted with newborns, and shed tears when her mother’s friends passed away one at a time. And now she sees her own friends arriving near the end of their lives.

There is a man who was a fighter pilot! What a hero! But he is also a farmer, a wine maker, and a kind-hearted person who treats his neighbors and everyone well.

There is a nurse who is retired. We know she must have done some extraordinary things in her life, but probably the most extraordinary is how she continues to help and support cancer victims and others with debilitating diseases.

That woman is a mother. To my knowledge, she never worked outside the home, but she raised extraordinary children while constantly dealing with numerous health issues of her own. That is extraordinary!

There is also a lady who has never been married. She has taught hundreds of children stories of the Bible, written hundreds of get-well cards to sick folks, spent hundreds of hours visiting the sick at their homes and at the nursing home, and delivered hundreds of flowers to the elderly. That is extraordinary!

There is the preacher’s wife. She does all the things a preacher’s wife is supposed to do, but did you know what an animal lover she is? That is pretty extraordinary!

So we have people in our church who have had exceptional careers, but what is more important are the extraordinary things they have done. They have made people happy, raised good children, attended to the sick and downtrodden, taken care of animals, fed their neighbors, rejoiced, cried, and showed love to people in the community. These are ordinary people, doing ordinary things, but with extraordinary results, and the fascinating reality is that these same kinds of people are all around us, not just in our churches.

Look around at the people you know and think about the ordinary people you know that continue to do extraordinary things, and then look at yourself. I bet you are extraordinary, too!

Harriet Hubbard