When you hear the word sloth, what comes to mind? The first image I have is of a 20-something year old dude living in his parents’ basement, reclining in an old La-Z-Boy eating a couple of Hot Pockets his momma popped in the microwave for him as he plays Call of Duty online with someone in China instead of getting his lazy rear end up and going to look for a job.
(Did I strike a nerve with anybody?)
The sad thing about slothness (no, that’s not a real word – y’all know I make up my own words from time to time) is that it’s a total waste of time, of talent, of a person. Basically, it’s laziness. Just not enough desire or gumption to get up and do anything at any time that will be of any benefit.
I don’t get sloths. I’m a Type A, get ‘er done, what’s my next project kind of girl. If I’m sitting still I’m either at the hair salon or having dental work done. I only have 86,400 seconds each day and since I go to bed pretty early (a friend cracked up the other day when I told her I couldn’t remember the last time I saw midnight) I gotta make the most of every second I can. (And hey, y’all – there’s a difference in laziness and resting. It’s living in the La-Z-Boy instead of just taking a nap in the recliner.)
When I started reading up on and thinking about the sloth world, the guy living in his parents’ basement is there for one of two reasons. Either he knows he should be doing something with his life and he just refuses to do it, or no one has ever told him he needs to be doing something with his life.
(Let’s be clear on this – my children will never ever fall into category #2…)
Neither reason is OK. And I’ll just call it – laziness drives me crazy. I can’t stand to see kids who are smart but don’t try in school or don’t give it their all when competing in a sports event. Those kids become adults who are wandering around aimlessly from one day to the next, no idea why they are on this earth, no goals in front of them, nothing that motivates them to get out of the La-Z-Boy and start living – REALLY living.
God has so much for us to do. American aphorist (that’s a guy who comes up with clever shorts sayings that expresses a true or wise idea) Mason Cooley said, “The time I kill is killing me.” Or as the Bible says, “Life collapses on loafers; lazybones go hungry.” (Proverbs 19:15, The Message)
“We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised.” (Hebrews 6:12)
I’m not 100% sure on this, but I think the one of the best ways to motivate sloths is to continually remind them of Jeremiah 29:11 – “’For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.’” – until it seeps into their souls and they come to a place of realization that yes, God loves them and yes, God has a plan for them and yes, He’s got great things for them to do and no, living in the La-Z-Boy for the next 20 years really isn’t His plan. (And if that doesn’t work, a swift kick in their booty wouldn’t hurt…)
So let’s all take a lesson from the dude in the La-Z-Boy. Let us rest when we need rest, but never be a sloth.
You only have 86,400 seconds in a day!
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