Laziness wasn’t allowed in my home of origin. As a first born child, my parents were out to make me responsible. Early on, I was given chores to do: take out the trash, help with the dishes, make my bed, clean my room. At twelve, I was using my parents’ push mower to cut neighbors’ yards for a small sum. When I turned fourteen, my grandfather procured me a job as a bag boy at a local supermarket. As an added source of funds, I also cleaned the church my father pastored. As soon as I graduated high school, I entered the world of full-time work and have been there ever since. There are days when I feel like being lazy—and am, but most of my time is consumed with work and doing other things I enjoy. Sitting around isn’t my style.
My parents didn’t appreciate laziness, and it appears from this verse and many others that God doesn’t look favorably on it either. Yes, there is a time for rest—God demonstrated that by taking a day off when he had finished the work of creation, but the norm is for us to work diligently during the years we are able to.
Though I’ve never been lazy where it concerns secular work, there have been periods when I’ve been lazy with God’s business. Those times when I just don’t feel like attending church, reading my Bible, saying my prayers, visiting the sick, checking on the shut-ins, teaching a class, monitoring the nursery, etc. And of course, when my attitude sours it becomes increasingly difficult to share my faith. Inviting someone to follow Christ with a sour attitude and a face to match usually isn’t very inviting.
Just as physical laziness will affect my health, spiritual laziness will bear on my spiritual health. There are days when I don’t feel like going to work, but I go anyway. And there will be times when Satan discourages me in God’s work, but I must maintain the course, knowing that my work for God is crucial and will be rewarded by him.
Has an attitude of slothfulness stolen your joy and your effectiveness for God?
Prayer: God of glory and grace, when an attitude of laziness is stealing our effectiveness for You, redirect our minds and hands to the work before us.
(Photo courtesy of morguefile and pedrojperez.)