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How Advent can help cure our boredom with life


Kyle Broad | CC0

Philip Kosloski - published on 11/26/23

Advent is a time when we can remember that life is charged with meaning and purpose, journeying towards a future of hope.

It’s relatively easy in today’s world to feel bored, not only with the current moment, but with life in general.

When we aren’t being entertained by the latest viral post on social media, we might lapse into a gnawing boredom that reaches to the core of our soul.

The cure to this boredom, according to Pope Benedict XVI, is to live with hope, looking forward to our final union with God.

He explained in an Advent homily in 2009 how waiting can become “unbearable” when we do not live with meaning.

[T]here are many different ways of waiting. If time is not filled by a present endowed with meaning expectation risks becoming unbearable; if one expects something but at a given moment there is nothing, in other words if the present remains empty, every instant that passes appears extremely long and waiting becomes too heavy a burden because the future remains completely uncertain. 

If life has no meaning and it only involves mindlessly scrolling through our phones, hoping that something will entertain us; life will become unbearable.

Boredom will conquer us and our hearts.

The antidote

Thankfully, Pope Benedict XVI offers us an antidote.

On the other hand, when time is endowed with meaning and at every instant we perceive something specific and worthwhile, it is then that the joy of expectation makes the present more precious. Dear brothers and sisters, let us experience intensely the present in which we already receive the gifts of the Lord, let us live it focused on the future, a future charged with hope. In this manner Christian Advent becomes an opportunity to reawaken within ourselves the true meaning of waiting, returning to the heart of our faith which is the mystery of Christ, the Messiah who was expected for long centuries and was born in poverty, in Bethlehem. 

When we live in this way, we look forward to God’s presence in our lives and are aware that he is always active in it.

Advent can help cure our boredom as it reminds us that life is all about waiting with expectation for the coming of the Messiah. Our life has great meaning and purpose and when we feel bored with life, we can remind ourselves that God is with us, calling us to him.

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