The Joy of Being Bored


8 Come, behold the works of the Lord,
how he has brought desolations on the earth.
10 “Be still, and know that I am God.

                                                                              Psalm 46:8, 10a (ESV)




Just scattershooting while wondering……what ever happened to being bored?

According to Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, the definition of boredom is the state of being weary and restless. I can buy that…sort of. But I’ve decided that I really miss being bored.

I’m fascinated by our seemingly endless need for distraction. We even distract ourselves during other distractions! Have you found yourself rummaging through your phone or computer while you mindlessly watch television? Distracting, isn’t it! Our distractions have come to rule over us, while we ignore more important things – like being bored.

At one time in my younger life, I traveled a lot. Twenty-plus years ago I was a principal officer for our national family medicine association; the year that I was president I was on the road for over 300 days (yes, my late wife Sally was, indeed, a saint!) I traveled by plane, train, and automobile and while traveling, there is a lot of “empty” time. I very much enjoyed looking out on the Creator’s creation from 35,000 feet. It gave me valuable time to do nothing – that’s right, to be bored. Some of my favorite stories in my book, In a Mirror Dimly, were born during those times. In contrast, on a daytime flight a few weeks ago, I couldn’t read a book by natural light because all of the window shades were closed so that my fellow passengers could work on their screens!

Being bored I could ponder and meditate, create and filter, wonder and appreciate. Boredom appears to me to be a gift. The psalmist said exactly that, didn’t he. We are to “be still.” The Complete Jewish Bible translates this as, Desist. That means to desist from being distracted. Instead, learn that He is God.

                                                             8Come and see the works of Adonai, the astounding deeds he has done on the earth. 
                                                           10Desist, and learn that I am God, supreme over the nations, supreme over the earth.

                                                                                                                    Psalm 46:8, 10a. The Complete Jewish Bible

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *