Thursday, June 29, 2017

Meaning Behind Monotony

"Life is a great adventure." 

     I hear that every so often in encouraging quotes and as catch phrases in movies. As a child, I read books that were filled with exciting and interesting stories of daring adventures and crazy happenings that seemed like everyday occurrences. I watched movies that were woven around the intriguing lives of individuals who accomplished great things, whether it was becoming a renowned scientist against the ideas of the time or delivering an evil ring to the heart of Mordor. Culture had instilled the idea in me that life was guaranteed to be filled to the brim with adventures that I could never imagine!

      As a woman in her twenties, I have come to realize more and more that most adventures occur in stories. Perhaps that is why I enjoy acting so much; it gives me a chance to experience adventures in a seemingly monotonous world. My mother often used the phrase, "We're on an adventure!", but that mostly meant that we were lost in the car.

     Even college seemed more adventurous than the "real world". In college I was always working on something new: a new project for my classes, a new song to learn, a new show to memorize, or a new conflict in my relationships with friends. I loved the pace at college because it was always pushing forward at a rapid speed. There was also the thrill of being on your own and experiencing new things in what scientists say is the prime of your life, whether it was learning a new instrument, cliff-jumping, or traveling in Europe. College is an adventure that I have thoroughly enjoyed.

      To be quite honest, I have struggled at being home this summer. Life at home can seem dull and boring when it is compared to dazzling lifestyle of college and the unrealistic fantasies of stories. The daily task of going to work and coming home from work just to sleep and be ready again for work the next day can be very monotonous. It is slow compared to college and uneventful compared to the movies I watch and the novels I read.

If this is all that life will be like after college than I am not too excited about it.  

     Maybe you are thinking these same thoughts. I don't know if you are on summer break from school like myself, just graduated college and your now in the "real world", or if you have been an adult for a while and you feel like you are living the same routine on a never-ending loop. 

Do you ever just wonder if there is anything more to the life you living or is this just it? 

     Don't worry. I'm not about to try and sell you something or tell you the one secret to the meaning of life! I'm not that wise. However, the Lord has been convicting me and showing me some things recently. First of all, it is all about the comparing. While I was staying in a hotel in South Dakota last week, I saw a quote on the wall from Theodore Roosevelt. He said, "Comparison is the thief of joy." That hit me hard! My current life situation for the summer is not the same as college or the stories that I'm exposed to. It is different and has its own problems and pleasures. 

The moment you start comparing your life to someone 
else's you lose a bit of the wonder in your own story.

 I've also realized this from reading the book of Ecclesiastes in the Bible. Ecclesiastes 3:11 says that "He (God) has made everything beautiful in its time." There is a time for everything. Right now it may be slow and uneventful but there is something special about this time that one day you will wish that you appreciated more. Secondly, life is never empty if you are being used by God to influence other people's lives for the better. Your mission in life should not be about entertaining yourself or striving to make yourself happy because that is incredible selfish and it won't happen. There is absolutely nothing in this world that can totally satisfy you except God. That's how you were created. The meaning behind the monotony is to take joy in wherever you are and to inspire others to do the same in the Lord! So my encouragement for both us today is to find joy in the little things and to pursue the meaning through the everyday repetitiveness. Relish where you are at right now. Life is never a mistake no matter how you feel about it. Enjoy the monotony!