September 26, 2010
I am an overly busy person, but I am a bum. I am extremely hardworking, but I am lazy. I am ambitious, but I am hesitant. I have huge dreams, but I have small faith. I am always moving, but I am getting nowhere.
I live in full speed, yet I am a sloth.
I am the greatest of thieves.
This is what I came to understand this morning at church. A message I almost missed because I didn’t know who I would go to church with and was tempted to use that as an excuse to sleep in again. One of the infinite ways that my laziness tries to steal from life everyday.
“Take a lesson from the ants, you lazybones. Learn from their ways and become wise! Though they have no prince or governor or ruler to make them work, they labor hard all summer, gathering food for the winter. But you, lazybones, how long will you sleep? When will you wake up? A little extra sleep, a little more slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest- then poverty will pounce on you like a bandit; scarcity will attack you like an armed robber.” -Proverbs 6:6-11
I am no ant. I am the rollercoaster, going nowhere fast. I see a goal, and begin to push towards it, but get sidetracked by countless other pursuits that leave me spinning out of control and sometimes freefalling face-first towards the ground. It’s a fun ride and I hardly ever regret it, but it always lands me right back where I started…except maybe with messier hair. I don’t feel like a sloth, because I am working hard and I am involved and I hardly ever sleep. But the pastor this morning defined slothfulness not as the absence of doing things, but as the absence of doing the important things.
By that definition, I am a sloth. I lead worship, but do I lead off the stage? I practice dancing for God several hours a week, but do I practice witnessing on a daily basis? I put effort into building a reputation among my new peers, but how much effort do I put into building meaningful relationships with those around me? I actively seek opportunities to serve in global missions, but how active am I in seeking opportunities to serve those around me every day? I ask God every night to reveal to me His will, but I’m slow to wake up in the morning and pursue it.
I’ve written this several times before, and I will write it again, more for my sake than for the 5 people reading this. There is no time to waste. We can’t afford to be lazy and sedentary when it comes to the important things. Talk to that person TODAY. Build that relationship now. Work hard for the work that counts.
Proverbs says that with a little extra sleep, poverty and scarcity with attack you. Practically speaking this is a very valid statement in anyone’s life. As John Smith told the first settlers, “you don’t work, you don’t sleep.” (That was John Smith right? That could have been one of the many I missed on that AP test..) There is more to scarcity than having a low income and having to buy off the clearance rack when you shop, trust me I’m a poor college student. You find ways to get by. I think the scarcity that really drains us comes from an empty heart, rather than an empty bank account. He who dies with the most toys still dies, but he who invests in relationships and works for the Lord leaves a legacy in the ones he touches here on earth, living on in the hearts of those he leaves behind.He doesn’t do this by sitting around waiting for things to happen to him, though.
I see many of my friends posting statuses on their facebooks and twitters today in memory of Aubrae Gunderson. Before she died 5 years ago today, she wrote “Enjoy life today. Yesterday is gone and tomorrow may never come.” I remember standing on the road with those friends singing those words in a song and as I think of that today I take heed of those words, but reap a slightly different meaning from them. I seek to enjoy life every day and live it to its fullest, but I want even more to seize life today. Seize life today and not put off anything important for tomorrow. Because I learned this lesson again 6 months ago and realized for the first time the full pain that can be felt from being a sloth, a pain that still hurts like it was yesterday. My laziness and hesitance stole from life once, and I plan to steal no more.
He did not give me this life to sleep through or to put off until tomorrow. I suggest that you stop hitting your snooze button as well. As Keith Green once sang so blatantly, “Jesus rose from the grave and you can’t even get out of bed“.
Carpe Diem my friends,
Love, the greatest of thieves.
[P.S. Remembering Aubrae Gunderson and Karl and Laura Anschutz this week. Forever in our hearts <3 ]