The juxtaposition of the ordinary and the extraordinary.
It’s something that takes our breath away. The natural and the supernatural placed side-by-side. When they’re familiar with each other, something deep stirs in our gut and we cry, “Yes!”
The truest example is of the God-man. Jesus who came to the earth, fully human and fully God.
In some sense, I would say the ethereal and the real need each other. When I’m blown away by thoughts and lofty things, the only way to avoid floating away into the stratosphere is to stay grounded. And you stay grounded by doing the work. Take the next step. Washing the dishes. There’s something about doing the simple task. I see the deep satisfaction I have for this in my encounter with L’Abri; deep earth-rattling discussions while cutting carrots.
In George MacDonald’s fiesty book “The Princess and The Goblin,” there’s a scene where Princess Irene explores the castle tower, gets lost, and weeps as she hopelessly runs down empty hallway after hallway. Eventually she stumbles upon her great great grandmother in a room spinning at the wheel. There’s a magical quality to her, she’s a sort of fairy godmother figure. Not only is the grandmother working, spinning at the wheel, but when she sees the princess, she brings out a basin with water and a cloth to wipe Irene’s tear stained face. This supernatural character doesn’t wax away eloquently, she specializes in wiping away tears.
To quote the singer Zach Williams, let’s give thanks whenever we experience “thunder in a shoebox.”