Nobody in Chile wants to be ordinary. To call a person “ordinaria” is considered an insult…as if being an average Juan or Juanita is somehow vulgar—an unfortunate assignment to a low-class fate.
“Pan de cada día”—everyday bread—is how we reference something ordinary and commonplace here. And we should know, because our staple food isn’t rice or beans or even potatoes, but BREAD.
Chilean bakers are the bread-masters of the planet. They make everything from the French imports like croissants and baguettes to our own inventions:
- The common hallulla, a flattened roll pierced with a fork.
- The every-morning marraqueta, a short, fat version of a crusty baguette, quartered.
- The copihue, a flute shape like our national flower, designed for completos—hot dogs complete with the works.
Why should we scorn our everyday bread? Hot and fresh, it all but melts on the tongue while it strengthens for daily tasks and satisfies our hunger.
Our Savior was born in a common stable, worked as a common carpenter, and died between common criminals. An ordinary life, with quality ingredients, can taste of extraordinary joy and accomplishment.
My Droplet Gift for Jesus for this day is: Contentment with the Commonplace and Ordinary. “Give us this day…” these 3 ingredients in the daily bread of our lives:
- The Grain of Goodness – Doing the right thing over the long haul provides backbone to life and develops healthy habits. Our digital culture that has primed us for the 5-minute segments of fluffy store-bought loaves and shortened our attention span to cramming a donut (and I’m not just talking about teens!) has also created a craving for constant excitement and variety. Instead of the next new thing, what about growing a good crop of faithfulness in ordinary things, in long-term projects and lifetime commitments?
- The Salt of Grace – Sharing common kindness with others makes everything easier to chew. It will preserve my raw temper in the irritations and annoyances of daily life. It seasons the hardships of trials and inconveniences—and even makes the beggars, beans, and baloney of boors and bores palatable.
- The Oil of Gladness – Exchanging the bread of ashes for the oil of joy will bind up festering wounds and bring a fresh glow to every day’s routine. Along with salt, oil in Bible times was used medicinally as well as in cooking. What an instant cure is a positive outlook! Instead of disdaining the commonplace, open your eyes today and notice the unnoticed and unremarked. Savor the beauty in the humble, the plain, the simple.
Take a deep breath and appreciate the aroma and texture of this day’s bread.
Lord, don’t take me home until… I discover the uncommon greatness of an ordinary life
where doing Your will fills and nourishes me,
like my everyday bread.