Editor's note:

Today Chris Webb challenges us to “shape an everyday experience so that the presence of God in the world of the ordinary becomes unmissable.” He shares the special way he made a lasagna dinner for his family into a sacramental act by inviting God into every step of the meal. And, even though he apparently put carrots into the lasagna, it was still “the most prayerful, spiritual, God-soaked meal” he had ever eaten. 

(We kid, of course, about the carrots.) 

How can we find ways to live this incarnational stream in the middle of our own everydayness? 

—Renovaré Team

Shape an everyday experience so that the presence of God in the world of the ordinary becomes unmissable. Here is one example—the way I did this myself a few years back. 

While my family was out one afternoon, I prepared a meal for them. I gave myself a couple of hours to get it together, even though it was only a simple lasagna. First, I lit candles all around the kitchen. Then I put on a CD of worship music. I gathered all the ingredients on the kitchen work surface. Then I began to pray over them. I said grace over that meal—before I even began cooking—with a thoroughness that has rarely been seen in history before or since. I gave thanks for every carrot individually. As I peeled, sliced, cut, and chopped, I prayed and sang. That meal was sanctified!

Then, while the lasagna was in the oven, I began to pray round the dining table. I stood over each chair and prayed for every family member one by one. In particular, I asked that during the meal I might be able to be attentive to the presence of God in the life of each person.

When the family came home I served up the lasagna. I doubt they noticed that anything was different—although, of course, they were not supposed to notice; this was a celebration of God’s presence in the ordinary. But I noticed! It was the most prayerful, spiritual, God-soaked meal I had ever eaten. It helped me to see something of the inward, spiritual grace of God flowing through my outward, physical world. It was a sacrament.

You might want to try something similar. How can you make your paperwork or morning email into a sacramental act? Delivering the mail? Having breakfast with your pre-schooler? Walking the dog? Drinking coffee at Starbucks? Standing on the assembly line? Driving the car? Meeting a friend for lunch? You do not have to do anything odd or peculiar; the point of the exercise is not to draw attention to yourself—rather the opposite, in fact. That which is truly sacramental is the most ordinary of all. It is about shifting your viewpoint, learning to see the world in a new way, discovering how to be attentive to God amongst the everyday.

Starting Soon: The 2017-18 Renovaré Book Club

You’re invited to a journey through four soul-shaping books, like C.S. Lewis’ Screwtape Letters and Chris Hall’s Living Wisely with the Church Fathers. Read intentionally with a guided plan. Go deeper with exclusive study guides, essays and podcasts. Engage meaningfully in online or in-person discussion groups. Running late October 2017—June 2018, join now to receive the included first book.

Learn more >