Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. Without having any chief,officer, or ruler,she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest.How long will you lie there, O sluggard? When will you arise from your sleep?A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.
As there are with any jobs, parts of youth ministry area not much fun. It may be a bit different for people depending on your personality make up. Some may love the administrative side, I could do without much of that. Some delight in turning in receipts and finishing up paperwork, but I’d rather go to the dentist. Conflict also seems to be one of those areas that most people don’t enjoy dealing with. It is uncomfortable and often draining. Those two past statements could probably be said about whatever parts of your job you don’t enjoy. I don’t like doing____________ it is uncomfortable and often draining.
What I am coming to find out from experiences in my personal and professional life is that it is not worth putting off. Rarely do I benefit from sweeping things under the rug. True, there are those few rare times that I put off something and it gets taken care of for me. What a unexpected (and rare) treat! More often than not, whatever the issue is, is still there and usually worse. I have never put off healthy eating and going to the gym to wake up the next morning in peak physical condition. It takes work.
I had a “check engine” light go on in my car about 5-6 months ago. Those are pretty expensive and usually lead to nothing. So I did what I thought was right. I ignored it. I made sure I had oil in the car and there were no painful noises coming from the engine, so everything was fine. Fast forward those 5-6 months and I still ended up paying for the check engine light, and those issues led to more issues. What was a $300 issue was now 6 times that. In all of our areas of life we must listen to the warning signs where our attention is needed. Doug Fields posted this week about our own personal warning signs. It started a good discussion on his site.
Busy work, conflict, cars, or personal health. None of these are easy areas to address. If they were, we would all be ahead in our jobs, in shape, have no fights or conflict, and have a balanced budget. The temporary benefit of procrastination does not outweigh the long term pain, loss, or clean up you are going to have to do. And what I am also finding is that my procrastination also effects other people. So if not for yourself, consider being on top of your life so that it doesn’t spill over into someone else’s world…they have enough to deal with themselves.
With a post like this it is really less about the specific issue and more about how it applies to you. What areas of your life are…
- Hard work
- Should be addressed right now
- And what is going to happen by you putting it off
Once you have established all this, set for yourself a plan of action. How are you going to take care of these issues while they are still small and aren’t going to cause you mounds of destruction in the coming weeks and months?