Thanking God for the Ordinary

family grace before meal

Editor’s note: Throughout July, we’re celebrating 31 Days with St. Ignatius, a month-long celebration of Ignatian spirituality. In addition to the calendar of Ignatian articles found here, posts on dotMagis this month will explore ways of Experiencing God in the Ordinary. The inspiration for our theme is the new book by William A. Barry, SJ.

As a child, I was taught by my family to be thankful in every moment. My parents taught us to be thankful for food before breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Before going to sleep we prayed as a family. That was an important time to thank God for what we had: for health, for a shelter to shelter in, for food, for family.

I thank God every day for having learned this, because it marked me forever. It made me understand that the Church starts in the family, in the domestic church. The family is where we learn to relate to God in a more experiential way. I know that many people prefer the liturgy, but in my home, we had a personal encounter with the irreplaceable Lord.

I still, as an adult, continue that personal practice of thanking God for every moment I have. Before traveling, before eating, before sleeping, I give thanks. Indeed, I learned to realize that all work I have to do or every activity that I start is always better with a grateful heart to the Lord.

When churches were closed due to the health situation, I expect Christians who only look to meet God when they go to church on Sundays had a more difficult time these months. For me, the sacraments are important, but more important is the regular personal encounter with the Lord. I can’t imagine a day without reading the daily readings from the Bible. I’m not always able to go to the Eucharist, but my daily Scripture encounter with Jesus is never missing. Lectio divina as a prayer methodology helps me to experience the Lord’s presence.

Today I invite all who read this short message to review how they thank God for each of the moments of the day in their ordinary lives. In this way, we learn to live routine acts in a way that recognizes God’s constant presence.


If you’re following along with 31 Days with St. Ignatius, enjoy My Mother’s Suscipe by Maureen McCann Waldron.

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Ricardo Grzona
Ricardo Grzona was born in Mendoza, Argentina. He studied at the Pastoral Theological Institute of CELAM (Medellín) at the Pontifical Gregorian University and the Salesian Pontifical University (Rome), with an emphasis on evangelization and catechesis. He currently chairs the Fundacion Ramón Pané, which focuses on the formation of parish and diocesan leaders, as well as various church groups. He is the author of Lord, You Called Me.

4 COMMENTS

  1. Thank you Ricardo Grzona. To be able to thank God all the time is indeed a special grace. We are privileged to do this small act during our challenging pilgrimage on God’s Holy Ground.

  2. This heartfelt reflection reminded me of my large family growing up. The domestic church has a profound impact. on us. We pray for all families out there!

  3. Thank you! How wonderful it is to be so aware of God’s gifts and filled with gratitude, that it’s is something to be grateful for as well. Thank you for this reminder to begin everything with thanksgiving. It is surely times like this that make us grateful for the ordinary and the things we took for granted just 4-5 months ago but even now there are still the routine things we have to be grateful for. I pray not to get so caught up in the hysteria of the moment that I lose focus on all the blessings we have.

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