Bob was on the train heading to work. And as he looked at the familiar scenery passing by he thought to himself, “I’m bored with work”. And that hit him hard. All his adult life he had tried to achieve something. Now all that had run dry since he realized that this was the best he could do. He and his wife Beth were both in their fifties. Life had not always been kind to them. But they had worked things out as a couple. They didn’t avoid difficulties; they spoke about them and made a real effort to find a common ground. Both of them, through the years, learned to be open to the other’s view. This had a positive effect on their children. But that didn’t mean that there weren’t some difficulties instilling values in their children so that they wouldn’t be spoiled. But with their children now in their twenties Beth would wonder from time to time whether she had raised them the right way. Bob told her she was an amazing mother and that now it was up to the kids to decide what kind of people they wanted to be. And now that the children were older responsibilities were less demanding.
During his life Bob had developed into a church-goer. He had decided in his thirties that he needed God’s help to achieve everything he wanted. In his forties, he learned that God was looking out for him and had guided him. He had learned to go along with what God let happen and found out that even when he thought things were going in the wrong direction, God was protecting him even then–when it looked as if things were falling apart. So Bob always emerged as a guy who got through things, even the time when he was laid off. But now boredom had set in, and he saw that he was not the only one experiencing this.
That Sunday, Bob and his wife were invited to a baptism. Deacon Phil did the baptism. He was around Bob’s age. Bob liked what Phil said during the ceremony and one day called him up for lunch. They went to the local diner and sat in a booth. Bob told Phil of his boredom with life and work. Phil said, “I know exactly what you’re talking about. This is what I learned. This boredom with life is something that happens to most people. All the things that used to stimulate us, don’t anymore. But in our limited thinking we have forgotten all about God, and how God is leading and guiding us through life. God is much more involved in our lives than we realize. This boredom is God’s way of training us to do things, not for ourselves, but for the others in our life. We are being led to be less self-centered. As a matter of fact, Christ, who thought a lot of us, even to the point of death, has decided to take us into a deeper relationship with him. Christ is asking you to follow him and live life his way even though you seem to be getting nothing from it. It is like a pruning that makes us stronger. You have to make a decision. “Do I live for Christ all the way or not?” When you don’t think you’re getting much out of life, you are actually (with Christ’s help) becoming a man who isn’t selfish–who doesn’t think life is all about him. You live for God and try to please God. You give your life to God and tell God, “Do with me as you please.” You’ll find out that the results are astounding. You are changed. And you will discover where God has been leading you, and that you and he are partners.
Go along with God. Live through the boredom and start to do things, not for your gain, but for the others in your life. This will make all the difference.