A few days ago, my wife and I were talking about some of the people we have met. You know who they are, the people who have lived their whole life in the same area. They have never traveled outside their state, many not outside the county, and a few not outside the city they live in.
In the course of our discussion, my wife expressed something that pricked me deep in my soul. She said “monotony breeds familiarity.”
As I pondered this thought, the picture of these people came to mind. They seem to have a very limited view of the world, in many cases they have a negative view of people outside their general area, especially those from outside their geographical region.
The monotony of seeing everything the same way day in and day out has created a familiarity with the things around them that breeds distrust, even anger, with that which is different.
I am reminded of Saul in the book of I Samuel. In this story, Saul comes to a woman who has a familiar spirit in an attempt to get in touch with the prophet Samuel who died earlier.
Saul sunk deeper into disobedience with this action and it cost his life and that of his sons.
When confronted by Samuel with the question; “why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?” Saul’s response was interesting. “I am in great distress” Saul said. “The Philistines are fighting against me, and God has turned away from me. He no longer answers me, either by prophets of by dreams. So I have called on you to tell me what to do.” (I Samuel 28:15)
Saul was acting the same way and making the same choices for so long that he no longer was aware of how he was conducting his business. His life entered into a form of monotony. He came to the point that he could not make a decision for himself. When his prophets no longer could advise him and Samuel was dead, he turned to a familiar spirit to come up with answers.
Websters defines monotony as 1: tedious sameness 2: sameness of tone or sound. (m-w.com)
When we become so accustomed to the same things, actions, places, words, etc, life becomes tedious. If we don’t take reasonable action to change monotony, we become indifferent to the things around us. As a result of this indifference, we let our guard down and our enemies take advantage of us.
We don’t see it or hear it because of monotony. By the time it becomes apparent to us, we have no idea where to turn. This is where familiarity becomes our enemy.
We choose the comfort of familiarity and reject a new or different way of approaching our issues.
God created man in His image. (Gen 1:27) As such, He endowed us with all of His attributes, including the ability to create. Satan, on the other hand, was not created in the image of God. He doesn’t have the ability to create and must use what already exists, that which he is familiar with.
If the enemy can keep us tied up in familiarity, he can keep us from realizing the victorious life that God has created us to live.
Monotony breeds familiarity, and familiarity coaxes us into a life of inactivity and, ultimately, a sub-optimization of what God has created us to be.
Wake up! Break out of monotony before it is too late.
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