Conversations, VOLUME 10

Tish Harrison Warren – Liturgy of the Ordinary [Interview]

[easyazon_image align=”left” height=”333″ identifier=”0830846239″ locale=”US” src=”” tag=”douloschristo-20″ width=”222″]A clip from our interview with Tish Harrison Warren, author of… 

Liturgy of the Ordinary:
Sacred Practices in Everyday Life

Tish Harrison Warren

Paperback: IVP Books, 2016
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This interview conducted by Cara Meredith appeared in our Lent 2017 print magazine…

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ERB: So much of your book is about finding beauty in the midst of ordinary, everyday places. When did this theology take root in your life?

THW: I wrestled with that idea for at least a decade. I wrestle with the everyday-ness of the Christian life. In a very idealistic way, I wanted to make a difference in the world, make a difference for Jesus. I had big ideas about what that would look like. And then, in my late twenties and early thirties, with two small children, I had no idea how to live that out in a quieter, more stable way.

So I wrote an essay called “Courage in the Ordinary” for a blog called The Well, mostly because my friend, Marcia, who was the editor there, asked me to. I really wasn’t writing much at the time, but that post got a huge response; I realized that this is not something I alone struggle with; it’s a struggle for lots of people.

I wanted to look at how the gospel intersected with the ordinary. I am friends with people who are doing big, beautiful things with their lives, like my friend Steven who I write about in the book, who started an incredible ministry among the homeless. I talked with him about my piece “Courage in the Ordinary.” We talked about how we live in mission and in the ordinary. It’s not merely saying, I’m going to take care of myself and my kids and the mortgage, and that’s all I can do so forget the rest of the world. How do we actually embody life in the ordinary in a way that blesses others, that does bring the kingdom, in a sustainable, mundane, deeply rooted way?

Also, because I’m an Anglican priest, liturgy, worship and ancient worship have become such a huge part of my imagination. As I wrestled with friends, about what it means to embody justice and mercy and peace in an average day, I bumped up against the idea of formation.

Our next issue (Eastertide 2017)
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C. Christopher Smith is the founding editor of The Englewood Review of Books. He is also author of a number of books, including most recently How the Body of Christ Talks: Recovering the Practice of Conversation in the Church (Brazos Press, 2019). Connect with him online at:

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