With dreary faces, my grandkids announced the two most irksome words known to a mom, “I’m bored!” Kelli, our daughter-in-law, is very resourceful, but in that moment she was thinking “Oh no! It’s already starting and they’re only 5 and 3!”
Resisting the temptation to be frustrated, she turned to the next best thing – Pinterest. There she discovered an “I’m Bored” jar!
The jar is filled with tongue depressor sticks with chores, tasks, and fun things to do. For the rest of the summer, every time Lukis or Karli announced, “I’m bored!” they would reach into that jar and do what the stick instructed. It was such a success, even though Kelli figured out quickly that “I’m bored!” really meant I want to see what’s in the jar today!
I have talked with people who have become bored in life. Within these conversations it appeared boredom was the result of reality falling short of expectation.
One of the most common ways people get stuck is by living their lives expecting others to provide direction, make decisions, and be the entertainment.
We live in an age of entitlement. And this is a recipe for unhappiness. When reality falls short of our expectations, as is most often the case, the entitled become bored even depressed. Reality will never match the dreams the entitled have been told to expect.
Deitrich Bonhoeffer wrote, “Bravely take hold of the real, not dallying now with what might be. Not in the flight of ideas but only in action is freedom. Make up your mind and come out into the tempest of the living.”
This is great advice for any generation.
Many people are stuck in a job or career they see as drudgery, a dating relationship that has them going nowhere, or a season of life that they are not enjoying. They are surviving in the land of boredom.
What if God had an “I’m Bored” jar? Would you want to see what great things God had in store for you?
The Psalmist writer points us to it. Psalm 16:11 (NLT) You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever.
God has gifted you in unique ways to honor Him. You discover these gifts by recognizing God’s signposts in your life, placing your feet on His path, and committing yourself to follow where He leads. God has created you to pursue, and equipped you to fulfill his purpose.
While the biblical picture of calling and vocation includes our giftedness, it also includes things like sacrifice, persecution, and an awareness of the needs of my neighbors. This is antithetical of entitlement.
Can you confidently say you are living out God’s calling on your life? Or can you at least say you are moving toward living out the life God has designed for you?
If you answered “yes” you are moving away from boredom.