Escaping the Pressure Cooker…
“Late again! . . . How did this happen? . . . Why didn’t I start earlier? . . . What is the matter with me? The deadline has come and gone, but here I am again . . . feeling guilty, frustrated, and defeated. How can I get myself out of this pressure cooker and enjoy completing a task—and, yes, even complete it on time!”
Procrastination is a thief, continually robbing me of those wonderfully rewarding words, “Job well done!” Of course, others are continually robbed of receiving my work on time. Procrastination has stolen my confidence, my integrity, and my peace. Now, the cry of my heart is, “Lord, please show me how to prevent this destructive decay of delay. Oh, Master, teach me how to faithfully manage my time!”
“Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom his master will set over his household, to give them their portion of food at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whom his master will find so doing when he comes.” -Luke 12:42–43
Q: “Is there a difference between procrastination and laziness?”
Many people assume that procrastinators are always lazy; however, laziness is just one of the causes of procrastination. If you are lazy, you are negligent in handling your responsibilities because of your not choosing to do what you need to do. On the other hand, you may be highly productive and in no way lazy, but still procrastinate by simply failing to start a task on time. One procrastinator has the desire to work and yet delays—the other lacks the desire to work and then refuses.
“The desire of the sluggard kills him, for his hands refuse to labor.” -Proverbs 21:25
Q: “Could there be a combination of causes for my procrastination that would make overcoming my temptation to delay a more difficult struggle?”
Yes. One person could be both fear-based and excessively overwhelmed and therefore struggle with major procrastination. Another person could put things off because of both low self-worth and a lack of goals. Whether your procrastination stems from one cause or several causes, the Bible says that each and every temptation to procrastinate can be overcome.
“No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” -1 Corinthians 10:13
Key Verses to Memorize
“Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time.” -Ephesians 5:15–16
Key Passage to Read and Reread
How to Make Wise Decisions…
“He loves me, he loves me not, he loves me, he loves me not.” . . . Have you ever picked a yellow daisy, plucking the petals one by one in hopes that the last one would reveal the answer for your life? . . . A very unreliable way to make decisions! Just as unreliable is making decisions based on feelings. Wise decisions are made by discerning the will of God, and God delights in revealing His will to those willing to do His will.
“Be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” -James 1:22
Q: “What decisions are pleasing to God?”
God blesses. . .
- Decisions that He initiates (Proverbs 4:11)
- Decisions that line up with His Word (Psalm 119:133)
- Decisions that accomplish His purpose (Philippians 2:13)
- Decisions that depend on His strength (Philippians 4:13)
- Decisions that result in giving Him glory (1 Corinthians 10:31)
“Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” -1 Corinthians 10:31
Q: “How does God reveal His will?”
God reveals His will primarily through . . .
“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” -Psalm 119:105
Key Verses to Memorize
“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” -Romans 12:1–2