Friday, January 31, 2014

Are You Being Idle?

We've all heard the saying, "Idle hands are the devil's workshop."  What does it really mean to be idle?  Why should we be wary of idleness?  Idleness is simply a state of being idle, lazy, non-moving, not productive, not in motion.  Now I am all for rest when our bodies need it and our minds need rest more than ever in this world we live in; but are we being idle and not even realizing it?

I have noticed in my own life that when I am idle, I am just being lazy.  My energy is low and I just feel like doing nothing but watch television or surf the internet.  The problem is that when you don't have a plan for your time, it really runs away from you.  I find that when I am idle, I don't get anything done.  I waste time, therefore I am wasting part of my life.  It really isn't my intent, but I don't realize I do it sometimes.

I also find that when I am idle, it seems like the devil doesn't have to do too much to tempt me.  Whether I am idle watching television and I feel the need to eat even when I'm not hungry, or I am alone and surfing the internet or Facebook and the temptation to gossip grabs me.  It always happens the most when I am idle and alone.

"For we hear that some among you are leading an undisciplined life, doing no work at all, but acting like busybodies."  2 Thessalonians 3:11 NASB

"At the same time they also learn to be idle, as they go around from house to house; and not merely idle, but also gossips and busybodies, talking about things not proper to mention."  1 Timothy 5:13 NASB

We can be productive when we are alone, but if we wallow in our loneliness and boredom, sin is just a step away usually.  When we stay productive and use our time in the best ways, meaning not being idle or doing mindless activities, it keeps us sharp and we are able to stand up against temptation easier.  If we spend time taking a walk with a friend or visiting with family when we don't have anything to do, we are using our time better than if we just sat and watched television.

The Bible says that those who do not work, should not eat. 

"For even when we were with you, we used to give you this order: if anyone is not willing to work, then he is not to eat, either."  2 Thessalonians 3:10 NASB

It also says that for those who are idle, their homes and work suffer.

"I passed by the field of the sluggard, and by the vineyard of the man lacking sense, and behold, it was completely overgrown with thistles; its surface was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down.  When I saw, I reflected upon it; I looked, and received instruction.  'A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest,' then your poverty will come as a robber and your want like an armed man."  Proverbs 24:30-34 NASB

"Through indolence the rafters sag, and through slackness the house leaks."  Ecclesiastes 10:18 NASB

There have been so many times that I have things to do around my home on my days off from work but I put them off in favor of sitting in front of the television or computer.  Nothing gets done on those days and I have only myself to blame.  We shouldn't neglect our homes in favor of being idle.  It never leads to anything good.

I want to be like the diligent woman in Proverbs 31.  She is blessed among women because she works hard to provide clothing for her family.  She oversees the home and takes care of what they own.  She invests in her children and respects her husband.  She is a great business woman who makes extra income for her household.  She is the opposite of idle.

The great part about what the Bible says on idleness is that it is full of promises for those who are not idle.  We are blessed for our faithful work. 

"And he said to him, ‘Well done, good slave, because you have been faithful in a very little thing, you are to be in authority over ten cities.’" Luke 19:17 NASB

We prosper when we are diligent.

"The hand of the diligent will rule, but the slack hand will be put to forced labor."  Proverbs 12:24 NASB

We don't have to fear poverty when we do our best and are willing to work to provide for our family. 

But when we aren't willing to work, it leads to poverty.  If we don't prepare for what's to come, it can lead to disaster.  

I am working on becoming self-sufficient.  I want to grow my own food, preserve it, and take care of my home without having to depend on grocery stores, cleaning products, or artificial preservatives.  Those things are bad for you anyways, so being self-sufficient should be the ultimate goal.  When you produce your own food and make your own cleaners, you know where it is coming from and you know it doesn't have bad additives in it. 

Also when you have to do all this, there is rarely time to be idle.  It helps to close the door on temptation.  Why don't you start today?  Instead of aimlessly surfing the internet or mindlessly watching television, use that time to start a garden, preserve some of your own foods, or even take up a sewing project that will save your family money.  It may be a lot of hard work, but if you do it, it will be so rewarding.

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