Summary: Never put off doing today what you could do tomorrow, who knows what tomorrow will bring.
DO IT NOW!
(All my sermons use scripture found on www.sermoncentral.com and ALL scripture is NIV unless otherwise noted)
I have been meaning to talk to you about this subject, but I just keep putting it off. It is a subject that needs to be looked at from a scriptural perspective, but for some reason I have delayed speaking to you about it.
The subject is procrastination. Why wait? Oh, I know there are many reasons we can come up with, none of them relevant. There is always something we can say, good things come to those who wait? You can serve no wine before its’ time?
“It can wait until tomorrow!” Despite that old adage, “Never put off to tomorrow the things that you can do today!” , the fact is that there are many if not most things when examined with the critical eye that could always wait for another day, another better time, another opportunity to offer completion or execute disposal. Take doing your taxes, for example. Many has been the time that I, prompted by a striving to be efficient and on top of my game, have tried to complete my taxes before the middle of January had arrived. And, how often have I found that, once completed early, I only had to go back and change something any way since W-2’s had not yet arrived or a certain interest statement had not yet arrived from the bank. Doing taxes in an efficient and timely manner usually requires waiting for just the right tomorrow and then setting out to get the work done then. If you think about it, there are probably a lot of things in this life like that. Jumping the gun and trying to complete projects and tasks before they are ready can cause a whole lot of trouble. In fact, trying to save time in this manner can often result in the opposite, losing the time you had striven to save. When you come right down to it, perhaps there is nothing wrong with procrastination as long as you end up “winning” at the end. I’ve often heard it put this way: “A successful procrastinator puts off his work so long that by the time it’s finished, there’s no time not to like what he had done.”
What about the old adage “Everything comes to him who waits?” Doesn’t that mean that the longer I wait to plan something, initiate something or complete something, the better the odds that the waiting will result in a better product, a higher achievement and a more rewarding outcome when I finally do decide to address the issues? It would, of course, be great if this were the way all things were accomplished in this life. In a way it would be like just sitting back and letting things sort themselves out and then getting down to business. In a perfect world things would probably work that way. I have often felt that this was the method for accomplishment that Adam and Eve must have used. Things just happened when they were supposed to happen. Time, in essence, had as little meaning for them as it does for God.
But, in this imperfect world we live in, it is highly more likely that the longer we wait to do things, the harder and more unpleasant they will seem to be to start. Perhaps it’s the way we look at time that causes all the problem. We divide things into yesterday, today and tomorrow. Since we live in today and want to enjoy the moment and yesterday is beyond our reach, poor tomorrow so often gets the nod for the “to-do’s” in our lives. Yet, when you think of it, tomorrow and today are so inextricably linked that waiting for tomorrow is like waiting for the next minute to pass on your watch. There is always another minute; there will always be another tomorrow. Clarence Macartney writes, “At the threshold of a new year, we stand today at one of those divisions of time which man has established for his own convenience. The division is altogether imaginary and arbitrary. This day is no more the beginning of a new year than yesterday or the day before.
So this morning let us look at the subject of procrastination with a word from God found in the very beginning of the Bible:
Gen 6:3 Then the LORD said, "My Spirit will not contend with man forever, for he is mortal; his days will be a hundred and twenty years."
Here are some of the problems with procrastination:
I. PROCRASTINATION REVEALS DEEPER PROBLEMS
Josh 18:3 So Joshua said to the Israelites: "How long will you wait before you begin to take possession of the land that the LORD, the God of your fathers, has given you?