UnMasking the Demon of Idleness #LockDown
- April 7, 2020
- Bible Study, Christianity and Culture
There are many vices that the bible addresses pointedly and strongly and one of them is idleness.
The wisest of all men Solomon avows: “Laziness leads to a sagging roof; idleness leads to a leaky house” Ecclesiastes 10:18
And Paul is incisive in his volley: “When we were with you, we told you that if a man does not work, he should not eat.” 1. 2 Thessalonians 3:10-15
Solomon has many salvos and this is one I find trenchant: “Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise.” Proverbs 6:6
We generally like to take the issue of idleness lightly because in most cases our minds have come up with palatable and “acceptable” ways of dismissing that unproductive spate as “one of those seasons.”
Fact of the matter is that God has apportioned to us clearly defined life times and thus the imperative to number our days (Psalm 90:12). As much as the foregoing should not be taken to reduce life to a unending drag of toil and laboring, God’s desire is that each moment we have is spent productively and fruitfully.
Consider these insights from the inspired writer:
Upon the right improvement of our time depends our success in acquiring knowledge and mental culture. The cultivation of the intellect need not be prevented by poverty, humble origin, or unfavorable surroundings. Only let the moments be treasured. A few moments here and a few there, that might be frittered away in aimless talk; the morning hours so often wasted in bed; the time spent in traveling on trams or railway cars, or waiting at the station; the moments of waiting for meals, waiting for those who are tardy in keeping an appointment—if a book were kept at hand, and these fragments of time were improved in study, reading, or careful thought, what might not be accomplished. A resolute purpose, persistent industry, and careful economy of time, will enable men to acquire knowledge and mental discipline which will qualify them for almost any position of influence and usefulness. (Christ Object Lessons 343.4)
Why you should not entertain boredom
How often do you find yourself bored? Being bored is a major index to a bigger underlying problem of idleness. There is just so much to do, so much to learn, so much to attempt, so much to achieve.
Boredom is a symptom of pathological idleness. It is idleness at disease level.
To be bored is to beg the creator for shorter moments, minutes, hours and days. In other words when you are bored, you are indirectly arguing for a shorter life at best and an end of life at worst.
At the heart of it, boredom is suicide just in lazy, indecisive and slothful form
If you are bored, you have in essence depleted your life capital through an imaginary exhaustion of life’s purpose, challenges, pleasures and treasures.
Remember this: Your life must be an eloquent argument for eternity. God must look at your life and find merit to award eternality so that you can enjoy unlimited space and time resources to carry out the most splendid of your dreams. The basis for the awarding of eternal life is that the soul has a purposeful desire and need for it.
I do not believe that idleness is the devil’s workshop. I believe that idleness is a piece of furniture crafted from the devil’s workshop. In other words: idleness is not risk; it is a crisis. It is not a hazard it is a pandemic.
The Bible instructs us to be: “Always abounding in the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:58). The narrow appreciation of the text refers to evangelism however the broader appreciation spans all work: (chores, school work, business, profession, employment, etc)
Jesus also asserted a principle that under-girds the principle of consistent productivity and fruitfulness: “My Father is always at His work to this very day, and I too am working.” John 5:17
God needs neither food, nor shelter, nor whatever means or resources to exist: yet He is ever engaged in work. This underscores the deeper essence and merit of work which has nothing much to do with survival and prosperity buy everything to do with the mind of God, whose image we were created in.
By extension Jesus’ words mean that a non-productive mind is an anti-God mind and thus if we strive to be Christlike, we then ought to emulate God’s mind and God’s routine which are centered on productivity.
Let me throw in a nugget:
The mind is a powerful ever engaged organ. If it is not applied in constructive business it will occupy itself in self-destructive busywork.
Consider this: “Look, this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: She and her daughter had pride, fullness of food, and abundance of idleness; neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.” Ezekiel 16:49
Sodomites had too much time in their hands and thus wickedness began to abound.
The current Lockdown situation, or any other, does not subvert the principle of purposeful and productive living. As Nabil Sabio Azadi puts it aptly: “When fishermen cannot go to sea, they repair their nets.”
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A multidisciplinary thinker, speaker, writer, software engineer and ICT entrepreneur. Most important of all, a seeker of God and truth, keenly expectant of the second coming of Christ.