Maria Morgan explains what Scripture has to say about laziness and identifies the difference between relaxing and being lazy.
Am I the only one who feels the urge to be lazy during the summer? Bright sunshine and warm temperatures make it difficult for me to concentrate on the things I need to accomplish. Friends are headed on vacation and neighbors congregate at the pool. Remind me why I’m not out there with them? I can feel the lazy monster creeping up on me.
Relaxing v. Being lazy
There’s nothing wrong with relaxing. In fact, taking a break is necessary. Studies show that productivity is actually enhanced when we take regular breaks from our work.
I’m not disputing the value of taking a much needed break. What I’m talking about is doing nothing because I don’t feel like working. And trust me, I struggle with this one.
The Bible has a lot to say about people who are lazy. It refers to them as sluggards. I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t sound too appealing to me.
Wisdom From the Word
Here are a few things I discovered in the book of Proverbs:
Laziness sets a bad example for my family and those who are watching me
My daughter learns from my example. If I exhibit laziness by consistently sleeping in late, ignoring the work I have to do, and sitting in front of the TV for hours at a time, how can I expect her to act any differently? God’s Word puts it this way:
How long wilt thou sleep, O sluggard? When wilt thou arise out of thy sleep? Yet a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep: So shall thy poverty come as one that travelleth, and thy want as an armed man. Proverbs 6:9-11
Laziness causes me to make excuses and give myself an easy out
When I want to avoid the things I should be doing, I can find lots of excuses: it’s too cold outside, it’s too warm, I’m too tired, I did a lot yesterday. And the list goes on. But the results can be devastating. Although all work and no play can make me a dull person; all play and no work leaves me with a never-ending list of things that need to be accomplished.
The sluggard will not plow by reason of the cold; therefore shall he beg in harvest, and have nothing. Proverbs 20:4
Laziness is a form of selfishness
When I choose to be lazy, not only am I ignoring the work I should be doing, but I’m failing to contribute to the lives of others. As a wife and mother, I’m responsible to provide certain things for my family. Notice the wisdom in Solomon’s words:
Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise: Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest. Proverbs 6:6-8
Laziness leads to all sorts of problems. I’m better off realizing the benefits of the work God has given me to do and doing it to the best of my ability.
Do you struggle with laziness? What will you do to make the most of the time God has given you?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You for showing me the pitfalls of being lazy. Forgive me when I act selfishly and refuse to do the work You’ve given me to do. Help me be a diligent worker, and a good example to my family and others. In Jesus’ name, Amen.