rebelling against low expectations

Is it okay to be bored with small hard things?


LAURA WRITES: So I try to do the small hard things that come into my day, but I keep feeling like I’m missing out. I want to do something “real,” something that matters more than whether I’m respectful to my mom or if I play one game with my little brother. Simply put, I’m bored with what I have to do.

Should I wait for God to bring along an opportunity for me to do something bigger (and still do the smaller things right now) or should I look for/create something bigger to do?

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  • *Swooosh*

    What was that? It’s a bird! It’s a plane!

    No, it’s this discussion question going waaaay over my head and my ability to answer. =/ So I’m looking forward to seeing other people’s answers! =)

  • I completely understand this. I always felt kind of useless until God gave me a passion. Whether that passion will last, I don’t know but I hope so. My advice is continue to do the small things and pray and dwell in God’s word. I know that is the typical answer but it works. God has a plan for you but it might not be time for Him to reveal part of the picture yet. If you have a passion, ask God how you could use it for him. if you are like me and have no idea about what you are passionate about, try something new. Luke 16:10 – “If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater things.” Continue to be faithful and persevere. Sometimes hard things aren’t fun but doing them with our Father can sometimes really be fun.

    • Mary, I love your last sentence: “sometimes hard things aren’t fun but doing them with our Father can sometimes really be fun.” What a beautiful way to put it! The sweetest thing I’ve found on earth is knowing I’m working with my Father, and He’s got my back, and He’s smiling down on me when I do a hard thing no one will ever see. Thank you so much for your comment!

  • I totally understand what you mean, Laura! I also often feel exceeding fed up with the little hard things.
    I kind of think that it’s a matter of the heart. If we’re discontent with what God has for us in our daily lives, then, probably we have a heart issue to fix. But if we just have a desire to reach farther, I think that’s something beautiful. It’s great to want to do greater things, but if not we’re not being faithful in what has God has given us, why would He give us opportunities to do “greater” things?

  • I totally know what you mean! The big small hard things like school that you have to do and don’t want to do, are no fun at all (*ahem* School?)

    But God has a perfect plan for you. He made the little hard things like school to teach you something.

    God has this awesome habit of opening doors that you previously didn’t think could ever be opened. (such as big hard things)

    I think its ok to press forward, but don’t force the hand of God. If God lays something on your heart, I think it’s ok to go for it. But make sure that it is God before you press forward to it.

    Psalms 27:14 says, “Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD”

    Another amazing verse is Isaiah 40:31, “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”

    Wait for him to open the doors, but then don’t be afraid to walk through them when they are opened. πŸ™‚

        • Ah yes I concur with that statement I too enjoy learning but sometimes it becomes slightly tedious. haha who says blondes can’t be smart!

          • Yeah… it takes forever and a week. (12 years of learning? what kind of fun is that??)

            *Hair flip* Not me! I don’t think that the color of the hair on top of your head is a qualification or limitation for what happens in your head. πŸ˜‰

          • Haha nope my thing is I pretend to not be smart so people underestimate what’s going on in my mind πŸ™‚

          • Haha! Yes!

            I say very sarcastic/witty/stupid stuff just to throw people off my trail. Then I say something profound and everyone is like, *Jaw drop*

          • Of course! I think if everyone was as awesome as you, the world would explode, and we wouldn’t want that!
            Wait, so does that make me a superhero? XD

          • The world would explode!! That’s horrible!! I should be less awesome so that the world could be saved.

            And yes, Christy, you are most assuredly a superhero. πŸ˜€

          • Good idea, but I’m pretty sure it’s impossible for you to be less awesome. πŸ™‚ Very kind of you to be willing to give some of it up for our sake, though!
            Aw =) that’s the best thing I’ve heard all day! πŸ˜‰

          • You’re welcome! πŸ™‚ Lol, I’m running low too. But, while this is fun and silly and all, you really do seem like an awesome person. It’s too bad we can’t meet each other in real life!

          • Thank you. That pretty much made my day! πŸ™‚

            You seem like an extremely awesome person yourself.

            And who knows, maybe someday we could meet in real life. πŸ™‚

          • YAY!! πŸ˜€ I’m so happy to hear that!
            Maybe! It’s a small world. πŸ˜‰ I daydream of the day that I meet someone and somehow realize I know them from the Reb…that would either be terribly awkward or incredibly awesome! Or both! XD

          • It would be awkwardly awesome. πŸ™‚

            (And I would probably not figure out that I did know you until three hours after the fact… :P)

          • Haha I went to another church to help with their scripture distribution ministry and this older guy there told me to “Keep smiling, No one will know what you’re up to.” haha

  • I think it is okay do be bored sometimes with hard things, I remember part of a book I read that may or may not be affiliated with this site πŸ˜‰ said the hard things that don’t always have immediate results can sometimes be even harder than normal hard things (I’m paraphrasing there) You just have to keep doing them and eventually it’ll get better!

  • I know what this feels like! @Mary stole the Bible verse I was going to use: “One who is faithful in a very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest in a very little is also dishonest in much.” (Luke 16:10) One thought is that perhaps God is looking to see if you will be faithful in the small hard things so that He can give you the big hard things later down the road.
    As for whether you should look for a big hard thing to do versus wait for God to bring it to you, I would say it’s probably a combination of both. First and foremost, pray for wisdom, guidance, and clear understanding of the Lord’s will. Then, go to your parents (or whatever strong Christian mentors are in your life). Tell them your concerns/thoughts, ask for advice, and pray with them for direction about where God might be taking you.
    After that, be open to God’s leading. God might speak to you through the Bible, prayer, another person, an opportunity; who knows? I think it’s fine to seek out projects to participate in. Just make sure that you (and preferably your parents) feel that God has specifically called you to this before diving in. Also note that it could be quite some time before God chooses to speak clearly.
    I’m quite inexperienced at life, so as usual, do take my advice with a grain of salt. πŸ™‚

  • it is boring! really, really boring to keep on keeping on. But it’s practice. Not everything in life is fun, (like school :)) but it has to be done. It prepares you for bigger things like college and getting a job. So look at it like school (ouch) it’s preparing you for bigger things. And pray about it! God always knows what he’s doing, even if it seems insignificant. Maybe God is putting this on your heart to prepare you for something bigger or he’s just giving you practice with the little things. Hang in there!

    I can really only say this because the same thing happened to me this year and the answer included rocking my world. πŸ˜€

  • So maybe its just me or the way that I look at life, but I personally try to refrain from being bored or boring. Even when I do the mundane things, and the little day to day hard things in life, I like to be excited about it and find a way to enjoy it and see beauty in it. Now to be completely honest, I am definitely not perfect, so I often don’t find a lot of joy in reading another philosophy book for class (thus, my procrastination right now) or cleaning a bathroom etc., but at the same time I do want to enjoy it and see it as a gift from God and rejoice in my ability to do these small tasks that seem to have no importance. So I guess my first point is, that I try never to call any task, no matter how small or mundane it may be, boring. I guess I just don’t like that word. πŸ˜‰ And maybe it also has to do with the fact that growing up if I ever told my dad I was bored than he was sure to give me lots of work to do, so I just have learned to avoid that word. πŸ˜‰ We should do every little task for God’s glory and if we are really doing it for his glory than I don’t think it is possible for it to be boring.
    Secondly, I know how it feels really wanting to do something big, but there never being anything that was just really big to do. Yet, I think one thing you can do is be praying that God would give you hard things to do and that when those hard things come (because they will, even if it is years down the road), that you would have the strength and courage to do it.
    Lastly, sometimes doing hard things may mean sharing the gospel with some at the grocery store or out on the street or maybe just handing out tracks. These seem like small things, but I know for myself it was hard. I was scared to talk to a stranger or even to hand a stranger a track. I think doing the little things that arise from day to day life are the things that will prepare you for much bigger things to come. Not shrinking from the little tasks and doing them with a cheerful heart are ways in which you can change the world starting in your very own home. πŸ˜‰
    I am sorry. That turned out way to long, but I hope it is helpful in some way. These are just some things that I did or thought about growing up while wondering what my big hard thing was supposed to be.

  • This is a very relevant question for me. Some of my friends started a constitutional class that ended up morphing into a fundraiser and ministry. However, I am behind on school, and my parents decided I shouldn’t do it, and should instead focus on finishing Geometry and Algebra. It’s so hard to see other people doing hard thingsβ€”things that, (in my mind) really make a difference, when I’m stuck doing math. But right now, God wants me being faithful in the small things, which are a lot harder for me in some ways than the big things.

    By the way, hi everyone! I’ve read the Rebelution for a while, and have commented a couple times, but I’ve never really introduced myself, or gotten involved in discussions.

  • Hi Laura! I can totally relate to how you feel about doing the small things.
    My advice is don’t wait for God to give you a big hard thing to do. Look at every opportunity (whether it be big or small) as a way to please, honor and glorify our Father.
    I am a freshman this year and started in a secular high school. It’s been hard, but God has been good. I had been making handmade recycled paper jewelry and knitted gloves and purses the entire summer and was ready to sell them. I was raising money in hopes of starting a ministry to support girls education in Rwanda. I was ready to do a big hard thing. But it didn’t happen.
    Summer was over and I was going to be a freshman in high school. I was really upset, I got tired of going to school by the first quarter. I didn’t have any friends. I hated taking Biology and Algebra. I was going to major in social justice and international children’s rights in college and graphing parabolas and learning about evolution didn’t seem to be relevant to my future career.
    I said to God one day “Why can’t you just send me to Rwanda? I want to serve you there God, not here in a classroom!” I looked ahead so much that overlooked the very fact that God had put me here in a classroom to serve Him. I blew past what God had in store for me, and demanded that He give me what I wanted for my future.
    Wherever you are Laura, it isn’t coincidence. God has placed you there to bring honor and glory to His name.

  • I struggle with this sometimes too. I go to a public high school of over 2200 and I feel like if I didn’t show up no one would care. But the verse Jeremiah 29:7 says to, “[But] seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the LORD on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.” Sometimes it’s difficult to pray for my city. I go into school knowing that I am there for a reason. God doesn’t randomly place anyone places. I smile and know that it is the only chance at that day. Once it is gone, it is gone. I’ve heard it said that you should strive to change one person’s day everyday. A simple note, smile, or a conversation with someone can really change someone’s perspective.

    Jesus also weighs in in the parable of the talents. The man in the story gave his money in accordance to each servant’s ability. I am not saying you are unable or have little abliity. What I am saying is be faithful in what you have and are given. Prosper where you are. God made you for your lane and no one else’s lane. You have gifts that will be developed over time.

    The little things add up. God will lay big tasks in front of us. Pray about everything, but don’t be afraid to actually do what He says. Sometimes you just have to venture out there- become a pen pal of nursing home residents, make cards for kids in the hospital, or become a leader of a club or organization. Everything adds up.

    I hope this helps.

  • Here is a very appropriate scripture to apply to boredom.

    Zechariah 4:8-10 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, β€œThe hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this house; his hands shall also complete it. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent me to you. For whoever has despised the day of small things shall rejoice, and shall see the plumb line in the hand of Zerubbabel.β€œ

    It is very normal to get bored with what appears wasting time. But I believe that it is the foundation for doing bigger things. Thank God for it all and do not weary in doing good. Your most important task is growing in the love and knowledge of Jesus Christ. He is looking dor the faithful and the humble. It may take a few years to get to something you find worthwhile, but take heart, He often shows up in the little things.

    Blessing to you in your walk.
    Jean Selden

  • David was a shepherd before he was King of Israel.

    Be a good steward of what you already have, and more will be added unto you… Until then, keep up whatever skills you have or learn new ones… When the time is right, HE will call on you to use those very skills you thought were “no big deal.”

    Keep your eyes open!

  • I was thinking about this, this whole past month and year. My quote to share with you is this ” Dream big, Think Big. Start small.” And “the small things make up the big picture.” Apostale Paul made tents and preached the gospel. He was a profesional tent maker. Correct me if I’m wrong :). If it weren’t for him being in jail and doing Gods will we would not know him as a man of a Great God who worked through him to reach the gentiles. Peter and others also were family men. My point is that where we are planted is of God. It says so in Acts that God determined where we live and when in order that mankind would be saved and get to know the living God….From a personal standpoint I just went through a battle of Lyme disease thanks to God firstly for his creation and natural medicine, to brave doctors such as Greg Lee, activists, journalists and scientists and most of all Jesus Christ I am healed…. I thought ‘I must get this out right away!!!! I need to start speaking at conferences and playing sports to reach a bigger crowd maybe I’ll get to be on TV!’ haha I admit this all went through my mind…..God showed me in dreams I had it all wrong. As I focused on things, and ministry I walked away from him, my first love….I had forsaken prayer almost completely, prayer is a ‘declaration of dependence’ on God as Paul washer puts it; and thats what we desperately need, what I desperately need. As my efforts Mounted to nothing, my family I noticed was being blessed with a closenss we never had before, God was preparing and is preparing us for the coming of Jesus Christ, the family as David Wilkerson warned must be put in order. My family is still in the throngs of addiction and being worldly so I saw that right now is the time for me to be with my family and do my part: as a daughter, sister, and Aunt….I saw at work I needed to learn to be a Godly employee that pleases and works for the LORD not just for men’s approval …even after the LORD showed me my sin I still tried to hang on to self effort and self reliance, it got nowhere. I’ve written my testimony, made a google page and am still in the process of making a testimony vid for youtube… my point is, stop stressing that you are not doing enough. Rest in Jesus Christ in the knowledge that he is risen and has great love for you that nothing at all can separate. Let the peace of Christ rest in your heart always…Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not upon your own understanding. Bring everything to him. All you weaknesses, lil things you count unimportant, or trivial also bring big things that overwhelm you and remember to not be overwhelmed by evil but overcome evil with doing good….Every good thing you do counts… with your little brother and mother and family. They need you right now. Be you, shine before man so that they see your good deeds and glorify the Father… last thing KB a christian rapper after a summer of tough stuff and being humbled everyday he put it very well “If God is letting all this happen to me then he must be doing something really big in my life, its like the LORD checked me ” what do you mean? I am the big thing in your life.” I’m paraphrasing. I love how he said this because its on point. He went on to say the record deal he made doesn’t mean he made it God showed him having God and knowing God is making it.” Rejoice evermore, pray ceaselessly, and give thanks for everything for this is Gods will for you in Christ Jesus.” From Thessalonians. That Gods will for all his children in Chrsit Jesus wherever they are planted. God bless you temendously with peace and joy, may the LORD be your strength through it all :).

  • “A little thing is a little thing, but faithfulness in little things is a very great thing”-Amy Carmicheal

    Really the whole point of doing hard things isn’t excitement, it’s to bring honor to Jesus. Almost anybody can go on a mission trip, or raise funds for Nepal ( and those are amazing things to do.) But, when you do the dishes with a good attitude day, after day, people are going to see that you’re different. And only God can make you kind on those days when your homework in in dire need of being stuffed down the drain pipe. Or give you words when you share the gospel for the thousandth time with someone who doesn’t care.

    So, maybe boring is better. It will make you more like him, and it will show him to the world. He will be glorified. And don’t you think you’re reward in heaven will be greater because of it? I do not consider our present sufferings to be worth comparing to the weight of glory that is set before us, therefore I press on for the goal.

  • Yes, it is so hard to feel that your season of “small things” is lasting far too long! BUT then there can come a day when the opportunity is at your door and you suddenly realize you aren’t prepared. Scary!! Opportunities can come at any time, when you aren’t expecting it, but equipping yourself with the skills necessary to meet them takes time.

    I don’t think there’s anything wrong with setting your mind on a big goal — so long as the focus is on carrying out God’s vision by truly meeting needs and helping people, rather than on making yourself look good (Mat 10:29.) Once you’ve picked a goal, work backwards and figure out the many steps, resources, and skills needed to complete it. These become your new “small things” that are now going to lead to a definite hoped-for conclusion. This can also remove some of the romanticism that often surrounds big projects — once you realize how much work is involved, you’ll be glad you have the time to prepare!

    I find that when my focus is small (mostly self-absorbed) then everything looks small, but if my focus is on God and his world, and the needs of the people around me, then everything seems much deeper and more significant.

  • Great question Laura. I’ve got to say I think this is a good tension to have, since it shows your aim to live a life that really counts, rather than one which simply “ticks the boxes” of complacency. And if you have this goal, I don’t think you’ll ever be satisfied with what you’ve already done, because it will always seem like nothing compared to God’s next challenge for you. Some things will always be “boring”, yet they are significant – not in and of themselves, but because they are part of a life devoted to God. It’s better to appreciate the insignificance of your own life than to exalt yourself as a “world-changing rebelutionary” simply for washing up the dinner dishes. And it’s when you have this perspective that God can use your life to touch others. That’s not insignificant.

  • I feel for you, I struggle with this from time to time. Sometimes the fact that these things are tedious is what makes them so hard. Boredom is part of the battle.

    ‘Whoever is faithful in little will be faithful in much’ Luke16.10

  • I’ve totally dealt with the same problem. I’ve always wanted to do a big hard thing (like write a book). However, I believe small hard things, is the time God is training you for something big. Being respectful, and playing with your brother, could mean an even bigger hard thing God has in store for you. In football (or basketball) you can’t leap to the end-zone, to get there you have to take steps. You might get tackled and hurt, but (if you fight against the trials) you’ll eventually make it to the end-zone.
    Don’t start big, start small. If you want to write a book (or something like that), start by writing a few great sentences, or tell stories to your siblings.
    Another thing I’ve learned is: (if you have little brothers and sisters) you’re only going to get to play with them for so long. Eventually you’ll leave the house, and you might never “play” with them again. Savor the time you have with your sibling (you might never get a chance like that again). Do something fun with them (like a craft or something like that), just don’t be bored.
    Anyway this is my advice.

  • The verse that comes to mind here is Luke 16:10, “He who is faithful in little is also little in much and he who is unrighteous in little is also unrighteous in much.” I have found in my life that there are a lot more oppurtunities to do small hard things then the big hard things which (lets face it) are the more desirable to do. We can’t just ignore the small things to get to the big things. We must be faithful in the little so that God will trust us in the big!

  • The ‘boring word is not allowed in our house! I think you should try as hard as poss not to be bored, even if the hard things are small, and be content with what God wants you to do. Who knows – tomorrow you may discover that you are about to do a BIG HARD THING for Jesus!

  • Hello, Laura πŸ™‚ I’m not the best person to offer advice on this subject, but, here goes!

    Losing the awe of life, however mundane life may be, is harmful. It’s something that i often struggle with too. I’ve found myself recently bored of failing, as well. I’m not sure exactly what to do about it. I’ll be honest, doing “big” hard things scares me, because i can’t even get the little things right.

    That’s where an amazing, gracious Savior steps in.

    God really has a purpose for every day of your life. He holds pieces to the puzzle of our lives that we may never see. It’s a daily decision to be content with where God has us. Right now. And when we fail, He’s there to pick us up, and give us grace.

    The puzzle of your life is purposely designed. Even the smallest, seemingly insignificant piece has a VERY important place. Don’t give up on the little things. Maybe big things are just around the corner. God’s got this πŸ™‚

  • No! No! No! I think that if you are bored with the small things that you are being called to something bigger! I read Do Hard Things and I was completely inspired! I wanted to do big things and be apart of something big! Nothing big really showed up and honestly i was not really looking that hard. One of my passions is the inner city! Once a month my family helps at a homeless shelter, and last year I helped over at an inner city elementary school! I want to do bigger things I just need to figure out where to start and I can let God take me through!

    • But do remember that sometimes its just being faithful with the little things. It doesn’t always mean that you’re being called to something bigger, sometimes its that you just need practice with the same old same old. Good thoughts though!

  • Laura, your question was two-fold, and my answer is two-fold – wait, and watch.
    WAIT for God. I don’t think it’s a good idea to barge ahead, desperately trying to find a ‘big hard thing.’ If you think about anyone who’s done a ‘big hard thing,’ it’s always in line with the passions God has given them. Don’t charge around trying every ‘big’ thing you can find just for the sake of having some excitement. God will show you what hard thing He wants you to do when the time comes.
    That said… also WATCH. This is kinda two-fold again. As @disqus_RcSvYTTilb:disqus said, try to look at every moment, every opportunity, big or small, as a way to honour God. Have open eyes to the small things (sound’s like you’re doing that). Also, watch for where God may lead you in terms of ‘big hard things.’ Is there something on your heart that God is wanting you to do something about? It might be fighting slavery. It might be raising awareness and funds for Lyme disease. For me, it might be giving a talk to uni (college) students half a decade older than me on purity. It might be preparing lessons and leading the girls in Kid’s Church for a term. And it’s OK to test the waters a bit. Explore your passions. Who knows, maybe God will show you something you didn’t know you loved! But keep in mind what I said above – don’t rush it or force it.
    Blessings, Laura!

  • How bout the parable about the Master’s servants being given talents guys??? If we’re faithful in small God will put us over much. Nobody that didn’t clean their room and do their chores became a King or President. Just saying. Love the comments guys!!!!

  • He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much. Luke 16:10Its normal and ok to be bored. Just be faithful. πŸ™πŸΌ

  • You know when I read the bible I get bored but it doesn’t mean I hate reading it. Its in our nature. I tried to overcome it by reading the bible while listening to a Christian song. Songs motivates me to do the stuff that needs to be accomplished. Yes, it is ok to be bored at small things.

  • A bunch of people already said this, but being bored with little hard things is okay and normal, and if you feel like its the right thing, I don’t think it would be a bad idea to create some bigger hard things for yourself.

    So plan… Seek God in all things (Read His Word & pray)
    Many others here have covered “…being faithful in the small things…”
    But If God has put a desire in your heart, trust Him to fulfill it .
    So make a plan, don’t just dive in blindly (seek wisdom & help from other Christians)
    – for this idea/desire God has given you
    – to do something with the gifts He has given you
    & do it πŸ™‚
    May Jesus continue to be your source of wisdom.

  • A small hard thing is NOT a thing that is small hard.
    Rather, a small hard thing IS a small thing that is hard.
    Does that make some sense?
    The things that we call “small hard things” are not easier than what we label “big hard things.” I am of the opinion that it is MUCH HARDER to honor my parents or patiently listen to my brother talk about hockey onemoretime! than it would be to organise an abortion protest or lead a youth bible study.
    Struggling with “small hard things” now teaches us how to deal with other hard things.
    As one quote in my quote-notebook says, “Small does not mean easy.” -Alex + Brett
    Luke 16:10 is inspiring…

  • If your ready for actual hard things then go for it! but if not its alright everyone has to start with something small

rebelling against low expectations

The Rebelution is a teenage rebellion against low expectationsβ€”a worldwide campaign to reject apathy, embrace responsibility, and do hard things. Learn More β†’