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Chasing Rabbits

March 12th, 2009

Focus Text: Proverbs 12: 27 (NLT)

27 Lazy people don’t even cook the game they catch,
      but the diligent make use of everything they find.


Stop Here and Reflect Before Reading Ahead

We often equate laziness with the simple act of refusing to work, but in actuality, it’s much more complicated than that.  Laziness is a lot like everything else in life: it begins in the heart.

Work, you see, is the x-factor of daily life.  It’s what we must do everyday–the vehicle by which things get done . . . whatever that means.  Have you ever noticed that no matter how much you get done, you never get done?  Thus, people become exasperated with work because it seems to be nothing more than tedious repetition with no end in sight.

Then there’s the idea that if one can work at something they love that it will take on a different light.  If only I could play music for a living, then I’d be happy to go to work.  If they would just pay me to write.  If only.

There is a definite significant truth to this concept, but I contend that even that which we love can become old hat after enough time has passed.  Besides, our interests will always change.  We grow.  We adapt.  We change.  In the end, work . . . even work that we enjoy . . . can still leave us tired and discouraged if we make it our chief pursuit.

Despite these obvious issues in people’s lives concerning work, the world-at-large still pursues tasks and careers as if they are the secret to finding significance and identity. Besides, work is necessary to live and survive.  So between the seemingly unfulfilling nature of work and the pressure to make ends meet, work becomes the drudgery that we endure because we have to.

To complete the circle of this thought, we can conclude that one can work and still be lazy.  How is this possible?  Because laziness is not just simple lack of effort . . . it is a state of mind.  Hence we encounter this passage and the truth of laziness: “Lazy people don’t even cook the game they catch, but the diligent make use of everything they find.”

The interesting part of this verse is that the “people” in question had to actually do the work of catching their meal . . . they had to hunt the deer or chase down the rabbit. Sounds like a lot of work to me!  If you went to all that trouble, why in the world would you not just finish what you’ve started?

That’s laziness in a nutshell.  It’s doing the minimum requirement without skinning the bunny rabbit . . . spiritually, of course.  It’s doing just enough to get by, but dropping the ball when it comes to the follow-through.  That’s a heart issue.

The diligent, on the other hand, aren’t necessarily the ones who thoroughly enjoy every bit of work in their lives . . . it’s more about their attempt to make the best of every possible opportunity.  Hard workers don’t always do everything, but they see life in terms of opportunities instead of obligations.

Opportunity versus obligation . . . that’s the real difference between the diligent and the lazy.  So, as usual, it all boils down to attitude.  The person with the right attitude does more than just chase rabbits . . . they are willing to finish the task as well.



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