Thursday, July 27, 2006
A Cure for Boredom
“He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.” (Eccl.3:11)
According to the old saying, “Curiosity killed the cat.” I have two things to say about that: One, I am not a cat; and two, they also say cats have nine lives. I happen to be of the school of thought that says curiosity is a precious gift from God that (like all His gifts) should be sanctified…then milked for all it’s worth! And, as I have indicated, I think it is the cure for boredom; because boredom is not a matter of where you are, or even necessarily who you are with, but rather, how free your mind is. Walls are good things; they keep in the wanted and keep out the unwanted. And this is also true of the walls of our minds. But in the case of mature men and women, it is important that God be the “Master Mason,” the chief wall-builder. Walls are too durable to be put up indiscriminately. We all know individuals whose minds seem to be “set in cement.” They are the most boring people we know.
Our curiosity should find its prime fixation on the things of the Lord. That is one of the joys of sitting under a good pastor who provokes you to think. Profundity is inspiring, but provocation is more lasting. He need not be eloquent if he pushes my mind in gear. And this is only the beginning. My husband speaks of Moses’ turning aside to contemplate the burning bush in the desert as a indicating a “holy curiosity.” He could have walked on, from either fear of the unknown or reluctance to consider something different, but he chose instead to take the risk. And what a difference it made in his life! For here He met God in a way he never had before.
I have come to understand the intimidation that superior education can have on those who have less, in most cases, unjustified. In the same way, those of us who have not had a formal Bible education can allow ourselves to be spoon fed and church coddled, so that we fail to take advantage of the live-in Tutor we have and the open Textbook we possess. After all, there is home-schooling, you know! Along with our Bibles, there should be writings of men and women from various spectrums of the Faith. From here, our own thoughts can form, the Holy Spirit can speak, and “…thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, Here is the way, walk ye in it…” (Isa.30:21)
But if you believe God is Lord of all, then your curiosity should not end there. It should extend to His creation. There is so much to see, so much to learn, and so much contemplate. We cannot always go everywhere, but with modern technology, and the printed page, we can explore with our minds. As you know, there are those who actually are there, what they see never goes beyond their eyes to their deliberate thinking. Curiosity is nothing more than undivided attention, the desire to see all aspects. It takes the focus off what I have seen or thought thus far and, if it is sanctified, raises it to God in other places and in other people.
The verse in Ecclesiastes tells me that God has placed within every man and woman a curiosity about His world so that they might come to realize it is beyond human understanding. That curiosity should be even keener when one comes to know the Creator personally. It was said of C.S. Lewis that his was a mind that was alive; and unless it is physically impaired, ours should be, too. If we are bored, it is because we have let our curiosity become rusty. Wake it up; oil it up; and put it in gear…God has lots more to show you!