WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
JANUARY 15, 2023
TOPIC: QUIT PROCRASTINATING
BY T. O. BANSO
“If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get anything done” (Ecclesiastes 11:4 The Living Bible).
Many people are guilty of procrastination. And if they stop it this New Year, it will make a difference in their lives between this year and the previous years. English poet, Edward Young (1683-1765) said, “Procrastination is the thief of time.” But beyond that, procrastination is the thief of destiny! This is because you need time to fulfil your destiny and you must not waste it through procrastination.
The reason some people have not been able to make progress in life is procrastination. They sabotage themselves through the negative habit of putting off to a later date what they should do today or now. Different reasons could be responsible for this, including laziness or waiting for perfect conditions. Ecclesiastes 10:18 says because of laziness the building decays and through idleness of hands the house leaks. Also, if you wait for a perfect time to do something, you may wait till eternity. Time spent in procrastination is time wasted
Ecclesiastes 11:4 says “If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get anything done” (The Living Bible). The New King James Version renders it thus: “He who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap.”
This New Year, don’t postpone for no justifiable reason what you’re supposed to do. Don’t put off the pursuit of your goals for the year waiting for a perfect time. The only perfect time is the time God is telling you to do something. It’s not the time when everything looks good or you have much money for the project. Neither is it when you have plenty of time or many people are ready to support you. You shouldn’t go ahead of God’s perfect timing. Don’t rush but don’t also delay. Both have consequences.
Some things are better done today and some at a later day. Don’t confuse the two. Some things are better done when you’re young, not when you’re old. They are difficult to do when you’re old or they could, sometimes, be humanly impossible. Hosea 7:9b says about the Israelites, “Their hair is gray, but they don’t realize they’re old and weak” (New Living Translation).
Old age would make you weak and unable to do certain things. You can liken this to the night when, naturally, people sleep and take a rest from their work. Jesus said, “I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day; the night is coming when no one can work” (John 9:4 New King James Version).
The Israelites wasted their years in idolatry, which sapped their strength. Some people are regretting today because they missed their time. They didn’t do what they were supposed to do because they said they would do it later. That later never came or when it came, other unexpected things came up. Thus, they couldn’t do what they had said they would do later.
When the Holy Spirit is moving your heart to do something, go and obey God. The time may appear not right physically but the time in the future may even be ‘worse.’ Don’t hide under tomorrow; every tomorrow will soon become today. As someone rightly said, “Procrastination is the grave in which opportunity is buried.” It has also been described as the assassin of opportunity.
Don’t be a procrastinator. Enough of unending planning! Start today what you’re supposed to do. Joshua said to the children of Israel, “How long will you neglect to go and possess the land which the LORD God of your fathers has given you?” (Joshua 18:3 New King James Version). They were to begin to possess the land God had already given them.
You must know the difference between the time to pray and the time to act out your faith. There is spiritual work, and there is physical work. You must do both. Don’t neglect or substitute one for the other. Pray but don’t fail to take physical steps that God leads you to take. This is the way to succeed. As the German proverb says, “Begin to weave and God will give you the thread.”
In Exodus 14, when the Egyptian army, who pursued the Israelites on horses and chariots, drew near to them by the Red Sea, the Israelites were afraid and complained to Moses. Moses assured them that God would give them victory but also, apparently, cried to God. God didn’t say he should pray more. Rather, He told him, “Why do you cry to Me? Tell the children of Israel to go forward. But lift up your rod, and stretch out your hand over the sea and divide it. And the children of Israel shall go on dry ground through the midst of the sea” (Exodus 14:15-16 New King James Version). God won’t do what human beings are supposed to do. Waiting for Him to do so is a waste of time. Do what you’re supposed to do and let God do what only He can do. He did that for the Israelites as they did what they could do: going forward into the sea, as He had commanded them.
Quit procrastinating about that course, training, book, business, building project, reconciliation, and so on. Don’t wait for perfect conditions. Think big but start small. Start from where you are. Look from where you are; not from where someone else is (Genesis 13:14).
Don’t despise what you have. Jesus fed about five thousand men, besides women and children, with five loaves of bread and two small fish (Matthew 14:15-21; John 6:5-14). He also fed four thousand men, besides women and children, with seven leaves and a few little fish (Matthew 15:32-38; Mark 8:1-9). Twelve and seven baskets of leftovers were gathered on the two occasions respectively. Little is much when God is in it.
Remember it was a jar of oil that the widow of the son of the prophet had in the house that God used to give her a miracle of abundant oil, which she used to offset the debt left by her deceased husband and lived on the rest of the proceeds from its sale (2 Kings 4:1-7). Don’t call a jar of oil “nothing” and procrastinate that you will do something when you have many jars of oil.
Don’t forget this: “If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get anything done” (Ecclesiastes 11:4 The Living Bible). Stop self-sabotage. You don’t know what is going to happen tomorrow. As Jesus said, each day has enough trouble of its own (Matthew 6:34). Every day has its trouble. Paul talked about “Making the most of every opportunity; for these are evil days” (Ephesians 5:16 Twentieth Century New Testament ). Quit procrastinating. Do what you’re supposed to do this year. Very soon, there will be another “Happy New year!” Will you waste the year 2023 by procrastinating?
If you’ve been procrastinating about giving your life to Jesus, this is dangerous. Stop that now and give your life to Jesus without further delay because you don’t know when Jesus will return or when you will die. It can happen at any time and after either of these, there is no more room for repentance. Jesus said, “Therefore you also be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect” (Luke 12:40 New King James Version).
But before Jesus comes, you can die. Hebrews 9:27 says it is appointed for men to die once but after this the judgment. Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation (2 Corinthians 6:2b). Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all the things you need shall be added to you (Matthew 6:33).
Quit procrastinating. Believe that you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you (Philippians 4:13). Step out in faith to do what you are supposed to do this year.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, I repent of my sin of procrastination. Deliver me from procrastination. Help me not to waste or miss my opportunities this year through procrastination. I shall no more sabotage myself. I receive the grace to do what I’m supposed to do this year. In the name of Jesus, I shall pursue and achieve my God-given goals this year.
(For over 900 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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