An old adage:
“Through laziness, the rafters sag; because of idle hands, the house leaks.” Ecclesiates 10:18
When I came across these words as I stared at a huge hole in my ceiling from a not-recent leak, my mind did get wondering.
Honestly, I was trying to have the kids memorize this good proverb when the weight of the words hit me like a brick.
What next but a fearless and complete personal inventory of my sagging rafters and leaking house? Some examples:
1) Why am I buying all the stuff and collecting them for future use but have no place to put them?
2) Why do I watch Netflix till 1:00am when I am already tired at 10:30pm?
3) Why is my car looking more like a trash can?
4) Why am I on the internet for 2 hours “researching” when the breakfast dishes are not done?
5) Why am I purposelessly hanging out with people I do not like?
I had always known these things, but I could not find the energy to tackle them. I truly despised myself for my failure list.
Why, why, why was I so tired? LAZY, said old king Solomon. Sounds harsh. Well, what is lazy? Lazy is the refusal to work. Work, in my case, is to confront more than my symptomatic list; work is to examine a heart that tolerates chaos at all.
The work of knowing myself and examining my choices is terrifying — shaming, even. It takes a lot of courage to become unlazy, as it implies taking up deep, personal work.
Well, I did take the time to look inside. Very deeply, actually. I had thought that a good mix of accusation and determination was enough to get me to turn my life around. But the deeper I searched, the more I realized that it was neither guilt nor grit that provided to motor oil to change directions, but self love. A person who loves herself TAKES CARE of herself. She spends all of her life not only desiring beauty but achieving it, because she is charged with personal approval and delight instead of shame.
Oh, but shame, shame, shame. How to put away the shame? Well, I have a great source of ultra-approval. I used to try getting people to apply me a stamp of approval. But, I really haven’t met anyone worthy enough to make that call (no offense). I have a tendency to declare people “really messed up.” So, if I do not approve me, and you can’t, who does?
I am just saying: JESUS. His story clearly says something about taking my judgment and crediting me approval. So, I lean in, and I lean in some more, and at some point, I have found that I am pretty darned much precious.
The WORK that I do, the anti-lazy WORK, is miraculous. It is the work of believing. Through faith, I am recovering my energy, I take care of more problems more immediately. Even my spending habits have improved.
So, let me end here by supplying myself with a good word. This is really amazing food for thought:
“The soul of the sluggard craves and gets nothing, while the soul of the diligent is richly supplied.” Proverbs 13:4