An Inconvenient Hope

An Inconvenient Hope

Christmas is many things, but convenient isn’t one of them.

Especially if you are the one who bakes the traditional cookies, the it-wouldn’t-be-Christmas-without-them-mom! cookies, while running the bedding for the guest room through the laundry, while keeping an eye on a child’s letter writing to Santa, while affixing a gift tag to the wrapped book another child will take to the fourth-grade holiday party, the same holiday party for which you remembered to buy the book but have only just now realized you forgot to buy the apple cider.

“But, Mom, I don’t want to bring apple cider. I want to bring Shirley Temples! Can you buy the stuff for Shirley Temples? And can you come to my party and make them?”

Oh, Christmas.

A feast is a beautiful thing, but a feast is no convenient thing.

*

It is a regular thing, however.

Every twelve months here it is again, reminding us of things we might otherwise forget:

Children like peppermint candy canes and gingerbread cookie men more in theory than practice.

The Christmas story is as concerned with what happened, one day, long ago, as it is with what will happen, one day. Perhaps soon?

Christ has died.

Christ has risen.

Christ will come again.

*

Childhood is brief, time is swift, and it will always feel like we are putting up the twinkle lights five minutes after we last took them down. Despite how we sometimes feel on a lazy summer afternoon, we are not drifting in a sea of endless time.

We are waiting. Eyes wide open. We are hoping. Hearts cracked open.

We are waiting and we are hoping for the return of our king.

And hope like that is no convenient thing.

Hope like that is an earthquake.

… the hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is nearly over; the day is almost here.

Romans 13: 11, 12

Ep. 13 – How to Keep Doing Your Ordinary Work Without Feeling Discouraged During the Holiday Season

Ep. 13 – How to Keep Doing Your Ordinary Work Without Feeling Discouraged During the Holiday Season

This is the story of how to keep doing your ordinary work without feeling discouraged during the Christmas season.

The wonder of the holidays can be diluted when we have to balance it with the work we do that makes gifts and celebrations possible. This week Lisa-Jo and Christie unpack the reality that everything doesn’t stop just because it’s December. Instead there are still deadlines and work commitments and maybe that’s actually OK too. Maybe we don’t need to believe the Hallmark premise that everything stops around the holidays in time for hot chocolate and mistletoe. Maybe for so many of us the courage to keep providing for our families in the midst of the meaningful season is itself a good and generous gift.

This week we celebrate the holiday season that has to find a way to fit hand in hand with our ordinary, daily work. And we recognize that different lives have different rhythms of work and rest and there is no one perfect pattern. And we discuss how the work we’re doing here on earth will likely bear fruit in the kingdom to come.

So, lean into your own timetable this season and let Christmas unfold slowly, and let your family and friends off the hook and give them permission to be themselves in the way they work and the way they rest too.

Out of the Ordinary

The podcast for anyone who’s ever felt the nagging frustration of wondering if her life is too small, too boring or too ordinary to make a difference. Lisa-Jo Baker and Christie Purifoy, longtime friends and bestselling authors, explore the surprising ways that cultivating ordinary life leads to extraordinary stories.

Visit our official podcast page!

Christie Purifoy

Christie Purifoy

Co-Host

A writer and gardener, her favorite ordinary things include strawberry jam, homegrown flowers, and old books with someone else’s notes in them.

Find Christie’s books here.

Lisa-Jo Baker

Lisa-Jo Baker

Co-Host

A reader and writer, her favorite ordinary things include hot tea with milk and sugar, a good movie, her mom’s hand-me-down books and Sunday afternoon naps.

Find Lisa-Jo’s books here.

RECENT PODCASTS

#outoftheordinarypodcast is on Instagram!

Ep. 12 – Ordinary Life at Christmastime

Ep. 12 – Ordinary Life at Christmastime

This is the story of how to be a Keeper of Seasons.

 

We share our favorite do’s and don’ts around the Advent and Christmas season. For example, DO give yourself a “get out of Advent free” card if you’re a mom of littles or just a weary wanderer like so many of us. And DON’T stress celebrating the season in any way other than works for you and your people.

We each share some of our favorite, most ordinary, most meaningful ways to savor the season we so often rush and stress through. We also remember our very first Christmas at Maplehurst with both our families under one roof.

Out of the Ordinary

The podcast for anyone who’s ever felt the nagging frustration of wondering if her life is too small, too boring or too ordinary to make a difference. Lisa-Jo Baker and Christie Purifoy, longtime friends and bestselling authors, explore the surprising ways that cultivating ordinary life leads to extraordinary stories.

Visit our official podcast page!

Christie Purifoy

Christie Purifoy

Co-Host

A writer and gardener, her favorite ordinary things include strawberry jam, homegrown flowers, and old books with someone else’s notes in them.

Find Christie’s books here.

Lisa-Jo Baker

Lisa-Jo Baker

Co-Host

A reader and writer, her favorite ordinary things include hot tea with milk and sugar, a good movie, her mom’s hand-me-down books and Sunday afternoon naps.

Find Lisa-Jo’s books here.

RECENT PODCASTS

#outoftheordinarypodcast is on Instagram!

Ep. 11 – When Life Feels Like a Series of Interruptions

Ep. 11 – When Life Feels Like a Series of Interruptions

These are the stories of a sick child and the birth of a book.

“How do you do it all?” we’re often asked. The short answer? We don’t. The longer answer? Well, those are the stories we’re telling today. Because life often feels like a series of interruptions stitched together.

But interruptions can be invitations. Invitations to rest, invitations to care, invitations to pay attention. Interruptions can also be serious, heavy disruptions. What then?

Lisa-Jo and Christie talk about the days when nothing goes as planned. Interruptions are always inconvenient, they are sometimes devastating, but they can also be good gifts in disguise.

Out of the Ordinary

The podcast for anyone who’s ever felt the nagging frustration of wondering if her life is too small, too boring or too ordinary to make a difference. Lisa-Jo Baker and Christie Purifoy, longtime friends and bestselling authors, explore the surprising ways that cultivating ordinary life leads to extraordinary stories.

Visit our official podcast page!

Christie Purifoy

Christie Purifoy

Co-Host

A writer and gardener, her favorite ordinary things include strawberry jam, homegrown flowers, and old books with someone else’s notes in them.

Find Christie’s books here.

Lisa-Jo Baker

Lisa-Jo Baker

Co-Host

A reader and writer, her favorite ordinary things include hot tea with milk and sugar, a good movie, her mom’s hand-me-down books and Sunday afternoon naps.

Find Lisa-Jo’s books here.

RECENT PODCASTS

#outoftheordinarypodcast is on Instagram!

Ep. 10 – When You Feel Invisible

Ep. 10 – When You Feel Invisible

This is the story about an invisibility cloak.

Because it’s only natural to feel unseen when the ordinary routines of ordinary life close in around us. No one is handing out gold stars for washing the dishes, or changing the oil in the car, or dealing with that pile of junk mail. No one gives a round of applause when we tackle one more ordinary task on one more ordinary day.

Or maybe someone does?

Lisa-Jo and Christie share stories of invisibility and ask whether our hunger for recognition and approval might actually be a good and necessary thing.

Out of the Ordinary

The podcast for anyone who’s ever felt the nagging frustration of wondering if her life is too small, too boring or too ordinary to make a difference. Lisa-Jo Baker and Christie Purifoy, longtime friends and bestselling authors, explore the surprising ways that cultivating ordinary life leads to extraordinary stories.

Visit our official podcast page!

Christie Purifoy

Christie Purifoy

Co-Host

A writer and gardener, her favorite ordinary things include strawberry jam, homegrown flowers, and old books with someone else’s notes in them.

Find Christie’s books here.

Lisa-Jo Baker

Lisa-Jo Baker

Co-Host

A reader and writer, her favorite ordinary things include hot tea with milk and sugar, a good movie, her mom’s hand-me-down books and Sunday afternoon naps.

Find Lisa-Jo’s books here.

RECENT PODCASTS

#outoftheordinarypodcast is on Instagram!

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