Definitely slothful. Yep, this former procrastinator was a full-fledged sluggard last week. It started innocently. I was the good kind of tired from a family trip to the beach and the bad kind of tired from some jaw pain. (No, not from talking too much!) A day of rest was appropriate.
There’s a difference between genuine rest and blowing several days in piddling around. Day one was profitable rest with sleep and helpful reading; thereafter, I opted for worthless piddling. It made me feel worse.
But I am teachable and God is still smiling while He corrects my course. I’m getting my feet back on the path. I must stay alert – there are many opportunities to lose my way.
How did I stray? By giving in to deceitful lusts. In this case, mostly hanging out on the computer looking up harmless “stuff” – like houses. (We’re not moving.) Giving myself over to that behavior ate up hours I needed and wanted for better things. I caved in to emotion and opted for what I wanted in the moment instead of what I wanted more. I fell prey to deceitful lusts.
Ephesians 4:22-23 – “‚Ä¶put off concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind‚Ä¶.” Put off the old man (who procrastinates) and put on the new (who reflects God’s holiness and righteousness by doing what needs doing when it needs doing). Giving in to deceitful lusts takes me farther from the Lord and His path.
What are deceitful lusts? Things that appeal to me and lure me with promises of relief, enjoyment, or benefit. The problem is those “promises” are lies. Every time I follow the beckoning finger, I regret it.
Tailor-made to the individual, deceitful lusts are one of the most effective tools of our enemy. The devil seeks whom he may devour. How convenient for him to watch us eagerly leave the path in pursuit of some fake or passing joy. How delightful for the enemy when he sees us move deeper into the woods, away from our God-given destination. How easy for him to consume us when we are trapped.
Here are some deceitful lusts I have to fight:
Inertia – It’s just too hard to get up and put on my pj’s or make that call.
Computer – A whole bundle of lures! Google searches, FB, email, news, favorite sites ‚Ä¶
Cell phone – Another bundle. Texting, photos, conversations, searches
TV – “I’m just turning it on for company.” “I need some down time.”
False reasoning – “I have all month to do that.” “If I hurry I can do both.” “I’m only taking five minutes.”
Food, books, magazines – even chores – Promise me delight and divert me from where I should focus.
Being alert – knowing what draws us away – is a first defense for staying safely on the path.
What deceitful lusts stalk you?