Learning is Addicting
Discovering something new is like taking a hit of cocaine. No really. Science shows us that learning something new releases the chemical dopamine in our brain, the same chemical released when doing drugs.
Despite what our high-school-selves want to believe, learning is fun and addicting.
So why then, for so many of us, does the Bible seem boring. I argue that the culprit is familiarity.
The Problem with Familiarity
Familiarity is one of our biggest hindrances when it comes to understanding God and the Bible. Familiarity is the thing that waters down the extraordinary and makes it seem commonplace and ordinary.
Learning is different than absorbing knowledge. When we learn, new neural networks are created in our brain. At the same time, dopamine is released, creating that addicting effect. Dopamine also causes us to remember better. It’s like the brain’s save button.
God’s Story is absolutely anything but ordinary. If you aren’t excited about God or the Bible, maybe it’s because it’s become too familiar. Maybe it’s time for a fresh vantage point. By adopting a new perspective or studying something foreign in the Bible, Jesus can become more addicting than drugs.
Try Something New
Try listening to a sermon podcast from a different preacher. Do some in-depth research on one book of the Bible. Learn everything you can about one particular Bible character. Read up on the fascinating intricacies of the Hebrew language. Or dig into some reading about the Biblical festivals, like Passover, and how they relate to our faith in Jesus. (I’ll be sharing about our Passover experience in the coming weeks.)
God created us with an innate desire to explore Him. Coming to know Him is an adventure, and what makes an adventure an “adventure” is the novelty of it. There is an aspect of “the unknown.” Adventures are uncertain and mysterious. That’s what God’s story is–a mystery to be explored.
If you’re feeling a bit bored by the Bible, perhaps it is because it feels too familiar. I can promise you that it is not. It’s not possible for the infinite God of the universe to become too familiar. We just need to explore Him more and explore Him differently.
Try something different. Learn something new. Get addicted to God. I promise, it’s a habit you won’t want to kick.