I was on a freshly paved highway in Northern Minnesota. On either side of the road, there were small bumps the size of piano keys. If you started to veer off the road, you’d hit these bumps and they’d quickly get your attention. You were back to the center of your lane in a snap.
We have something similar, only better! We have the gentle and loving voice of God’s Holy Spirit nudging us like a loving parent. If we’d pay attention instead of acting like the little child mesmerized by the TV or a video game, we would hear the voice of the Lord or sense His prompting. If we had great reverence for God—whom we know we should revere—we’d stay in His perfect will. It really does take purposeful neglect to get outside of the will of God. Can you admit that? If you can admit it, then you have the ability to return to His perfect will.
Not everyone goes astray because of willful sin. Sometimes poor decisions or slothfulness and procrastination get us there. Procrastination is such a thief! The things people put off are most often small things that would truly bring satisfaction and inner peace and joy. The reasons we put things off are most often born out of fear or laziness—and they rob us! Sometimes God is leading, nudging, or prompting you to get a task done or to reach out to someone with an act of kindness. If you procrastinate out of fear or laziness, you’ll never discover why. Learning to recognize God’s voice, obeying it, and learning to be diligent instead of lazy builds character. It helps you experience satisfaction in knowing that you are disciplined in following your heart to do what you know you should. Overcoming fears through faith in God’s help accomplishes the same. Beyond that, there can be hidden blessings in obeying those promptings.
A few months ago I caught myself continually thinking about cleaning out this drawer in my dresser. It’s my junk drawer. (Yes, I have a junk drawer.) It’s the resting place for odd things that have no normal place to be put. Anyway, I could not shake the impression to clean out this drawer. I spent about forty-five minutes cleaning it out and filled a waste can. While cleaning it I found my missing reading glasses. I was so blessed. I knew that was why God wanted me to clean that drawer. I was so thankful I did not procrastinate doing it.
What are you putting off: visiting your parents; going to church; doing your exercises; cleaning that closet or laundry room; writing in your journal; reading your Bible; writing that note or thank you card? Can you see that all these things added up steal from your character development of revering and obeying and steal the joy you can feel in doing them? And yes, your procrastination concerning them can ultimately help lead you away from God.
When Nicodemus faced Jesus, he wanted to procrastinate or put off what he knew in his heart he should do—accept Jesus’ word as truth. Jesus confronted Nicodemus and will confront you too. (Maybe He is doing so right now!) Don’t procrastinate. Don’t be lazy. Don’t put off!
John 3:10 (Message Bible) Jesus said, “You’re a respected teacher of Israel and you don’t know these basics? Listen carefully. I’m speaking sober truth to you. I speak only of what I know by experience; I give witness only to what I have seen with my own eyes. There is nothing secondhand here, no hearsay. Yet instead of facing the evidence and accepting it, you procrastinate with questions. If I tell you things that are plain as the hand before your face and you don’t believe me, what use is there in telling you of things you can’t see, the things of God?
In His love,
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2009 Tim Burt, All rights reserved.