Getting a Grip on Boredom

Monotony can easily become an issue for many. I had been told to be on alert for it, but it seems like I’ve got to learn for myself.

With any chronic illness, there can be something tedious and routine about life. To have a physical or mental illness is acutely painful in many different ways. Afflicted people understand what I’m talking about. Pain can be intense and intrusive. Sometimes these things can become really depressing.

The sheer boredom of my illness can strangle my walk. It seems every day is the same and the foreseeable future holds little hope of it changing. Now I’m a reasonably sedate person. I don’t need a lot of excitement. (I like a good book and a cup of tea.) I’m not after adventure, but I don’t care too much for monotony either.

Brain-numbing existence is quite common for the afflicted.

Many people don’t understand this. Others do. And it’s not limited to us who struggle with illness. It’s seen in other people too. This brain-numbing life happens to many as well. Consider–

  • the single mom working as a secretary
  • the man mopping floors
  • the college grad frying burgers
  • the resident at the old folks’ home, every day is the same

These situations seem inescapable. We see ourselves locked into a situation where escape is not possible. We are consigned to do whatever our circumstances dictate. We’re all trapped. Pure and simple. We can find no meaning in our lives; we start to despair, “Will it ever be different?”

I believe the drabness of our lives can often be attributed to a lack of intimacy with the Lord Jesus. We are built for fellowship with God, and anything else is just “treading water.” Nothing satisfies, except Him present. I need Him desperately.

When I’m filled with hopelessness, I often find myself filling the emptiness with anything I can find. This usually leads to even more sadness and deadness inside. It’s a vicious cycle that destroys as easily as more gross and obvious sin.

When I ponder my hopelessness I feel like giving up. I simply don’t want to take another step into the doldrums of what my life has become. I despair that life will continue its suffering grind.

I must have joy in order to survive.

“The joy of the Lord is your strength” (Neh. 8:10). I don’t have to dwell in the grey drabness of hopelessness. My heart can find a reason to “sing to the Lord.”

“The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. Therefore my heart celebrates, and I give thanks to him with my song.”

Psalm 28:7, CSB

The Psalms repeatedly tell me the incredible power of a life that sings.

The Holy Spirit understands our brokenness. Jesus is interceding for us at this very moment, and I can rise above this tedious mess I have made for myself. This is the only way out for me. Depression is a form of suffering.

I give it to Him. I take the strength and joy He gives.

Author: Pastor Bryan Lowe

The Chief Sinner of the "Chiefest of Sinner's Club." Studying God's Word is my joy. I want you to understand that there is nothing greater than a life given to Him. All that is written for us is a gift given to us by the Holy Spirit, and He uses these things to build His Kingdom in our hearts. I encourage you to make this your passion as well.

2 thoughts on “Getting a Grip on Boredom”

  1. Everyone needs to find their own way in this life. It helps to know we have a helper. When I get depressed I usually just tough it through by myself. I struggle with my faith a lot. Its not that I don’t believe just that it gets unbearably lonely. One of the bad things about bipolar is that you don’t want to share out of embarrassment or rejection then have a tendency to push away loved ones or ruin relationships.

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  2. True. Depression is a form of grief, a feeling of loss (loss of hope for example). The Bible talks often about it, using different terms for it. In one place, Solomon calls it a crushed spirit: “A merry heart does good, like medicine, but a broken spirit dries the bones” (Pro. 17:22).

    Because the joy of the Lord is our strength and because we must have vision or purpose to walk with God in His purpose for our lives, the Bible seems convinced that it is not God’s will for anyone to suffer from depression or ongoing grief. Isaiah calls it in one place, a spirit of heaviness, and Jesus quoted the passage, saying that He came to deliver people from such a fate. In Isaiah’s passage, we see depression (heaviness) contrasted with praise (purpose, vision, genuine and fulfilled hope): “[He has sent Me] to give them beauty (restoration) for ashes (loss), a garment of praise (restored purpose) for a spirit of heaviness (depression, loss of purpose)” (61:3).

    Since depression/grief (heaviness) is the opposite of purpose (praise, hope, a good outlook on life: “The plans I have for you [are] to give you a future and hope” — Jer. 29:11), we can be sure that God desires to heal or deliver those who struggle with depression (darkness) which is darkness or a loss of vision, hope, and light (a way forward). I hope this blesses someone.

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