Someone recently expressed to this recovering procrastinator her interest in learning why the heart desires procrastination more than pleasing God. Thank you, friend! Her interest parallels my recent ponderings in Psalm 19:12-13 (NKJV). I delved into this passage because it has often caught my attention, and it addresses some of this question.
“Who can understand his errors? Cleanse me from secret faults.
Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins; Let them not have dominion over me. Then I shall be blameless, and I shall be innocent of great transgression.”
I looked up the Hebrew in Strong’s Concordance. (A very helpful resource!) Then I wrote a paraphrase:
Who can discern, distinguish his moral mistakes, his straying – even that he’s been deceived or has sinned by ignorance and wandered? Cleanse me from hidden, covered up faults – where I’ve missed you, your way. Keep me back also from arrogant, prideful offences. Do not let them rule or govern me or have power over me. Then I shall be clean, free, innocent. And I shall be free of rebellion, of breaking away from your just authority.
In verse 12, the sins seem to be from lack of discernment, even ignorance. I may not know I’ve done wrong or I may be hiding truth from myself. In verse 13 the sins seem to be more deliberate – maybe or maybe not consciously chosen to go against God or His way, but chosen in arrogance for the sake of my pride. I don’t think of myself as arrogant before God, but I think I’m right and I choose my viewpoint over His.
That’s big – choosing my viewpoint over His. Then since I have to “protect” or justify my viewpoint even to myself, the irony is that arrogance moves into power over me. I have to “own” the position I’ve taken. But pride is owning me.
It’s alarming that sometimes I do know I’m wrong, but I choose to do the thing I prefer anyway.
During the high school years, I put off doing my student’s transcript. Once into it, it was a bigger job than I’d anticipated simply because I’d put it off. With the next student I knew it was a big job and deliberately put it off because it was big! An example of ignorance and of deliberate choice.
I don’t think my heart desires procrastination itself. I do desire my own route to relief. I’m short sighted and I want rapid gratification – so I procrastinate.
What do you think?