The Dreaded Task
The sluggard says, “There is a lion outside; I will be killed in the streets!” (Pro. 22:13).
Why would a lazy person say such a thing? Because any excuse, no matter how improbable, is enough to keep him from working. Frivolous excuses don't satisfy God, and they don't really satisfy the folks offering them up. "The way of the lazy is a hedge of thorns" (Pro. 15:19)––this "hedge of thorns" can be the result of one's laziness (Pro. 24:30-31) or it can be from his imagination, but either way he never works up the gumption to even get started. If we don't have a mind to work, then EVERYTHING is construed as "too hard" or "dangerous." Isn't this one of our biggest hurdles? Just getting started with a task we dread doing? I found the task that I had dreaded so, Was not so difficult when once begun; It was the dread itself that was the foe, And dread once conquered means a victory won. –Margaret E. Brown Usually we're trapped in our own heads–convinced that the job or day or task is insurmountable. But when we change our mindset, and give our best effort and attitude, we'll find it was never as awful as the devil wanted us to believe. Satan wants you to believe your emotions, feelings, and attitudes must rule your mind, not the other way around. He desperately works to make you think emotions HAPPEN TO you. He would rather you forget God teaches us to halt, reject, and even reverse certain emotions. Satan would rather you believe you CAN'T (let alone OUGHT to) be focused and committed to your work regardless of how you feel. The truth is we can always find or imagine excuses for ourselves, but God knows better. Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might (Ecc. 9:10); whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men (Col. 3:23). “No unwelcome tasks become any the less unwelcome by putting them off till tomorrow. It is only when they are behind us and done, that we begin to find that there is a sweetness to be tasted afterwards, and that the remembrance of unwelcome duties unhesitatingly done is welcome and pleasant. Accomplished, they are full of blessing, and there is a smile on their faces as they leave us. Undone, they stand threatening and disturbing our tranquility, and hindering our communion with God. If there is lying before you any bit of work from which you shrink, go straight up to it, and do it at once. The only way to get rid of it is to do it.” ––Alexander MacLaren