Rabbi Steven Z. Leder serves the Wilshire Boulevard Temple in Los Angeles. At the start of this collection of meditative essays he writes: "A two-thousand-year-old rabbinic parable claims that the Torah was originally given in seventy languages so that every nation could understand its wisdom and no people could claim it solely as its own. Long ago, the rabbis understood that God speaks in many ways — in nature, silence, music, love, and anguish. Our job is to listen in many ways."

Rabbi Leder has divided this book into chapters on life, God, evil, miracles, Judaism, marriage, unfinished business, and death. For him everyday spirituality is a path that grows naturally out of study of the Torah, the Talmud, and Midrash. The author draws out meanings from a weekend fishing trip, an accident-prone frog, a visit to a convalescent hospital with some twelve year olds, giving blood, experiencing a ritual bath, a men's group, and reverencing trees. The Extraordinary Nature of Ordinary Things will help readers ponder all the wonderful ways God speaks to us in the midst of life.