Confessions of a Procrastinator
Hi, friend. I’m Gabbi, and I am a procrastinator.
Seriously. It’s bad. For instance, I am sitting here staring at a pile of laundry that has yet to be washed or put away in over two weeks… That’s right. TWO WEEKS. I couldn’t tell you the last time I vacuumed our rugs or mopped the floor (probably should actually own a mop first. Making a mental note to put a mop on my grocery Clicklist for this week). I usually like to put off cleaning the floors until absolutely necessary, which is when I either notice my children picking dirt off of their feet or family is coming over. But it’s not just the not-so-fun things I put off.
I enjoy getting my nails done. It’s a way that I have some self-care time. But, I’ll wait until the very last possible minute to get them done. The last time I went, I made an appointment and told them I needed a fill-in. When I got there, they laughed at me and made me get new ones because over half of them were actually broken. It’s not that I couldn’t have gone earlier, I just didn’t. I am always waiting until absolutely necessary to do what I need to do or what I want to do. It’s weird, and I’m working on it. Maybe you can relate.
So when I began my daily reading the other day, I was struck by a statement that Jesus made. In this particular 24 hour period, Jesus had done a ton of stuff - taught people, healed some people, was being followed around by people. He was a busy dude. After having done all of this, while everyone was asleep, Jesus got up early in the morning and went somewhere to pray. During His “quiet time”, the disciples came and told Him that people were looking for Him. What was Jesus’ response? You can find it in Mark 1:38.
He said to them, “Let us go somewhere else to the towns nearby, so that I may preach there also; for that is what I came for.”
Another version says “that’s what I came out here for”.
For some reason, this really stood out to me. Jesus didn’t let busyness, tiredness, or an interrupted quiet time distract Him. He didn’t wait until the last possible minute to do the things He needed to do. He knew what assignment God had given Him here on this earth, and He wasn’t about to put it off or waste time. He let nothing stop Him from His purpose.
Now, I don’t know about you, but this has really challenged me at the start of this new year. So I want to ask you two questions (and I’m asking myself the same):
1) What did you come out here for?
What’s your purpose? Yes, we all have the same overarching purpose - to love people, point them to Jesus, and make disciples. But how we go about doing that, is different for everyone. So what’s yours? Is it starting that small-group in your home, starting that business you’ve always dreamed of, writing that book, working from home, giving up a job to stay at home? If you’re unsure, ask wise counsel around you who know you and can give you insight and above all, PRAY.
2. Are you doing it?
Are you taking steps toward what it is God is asking you to do? Even if they’re small steps. You made that phone call, you did that research, you reached out to that person, you wrote the first paragraph of a book. Whatever it may look like for you, are you actually taking steps toward Jesus and the purpose He has given you?
I am convinced that in my life, procrastination is often due to one of two things: busyness or fear disguised as busyness. Chances are, if you’re breathing and have a family in any capacity, you’re busy. It seems that “busy” has become a status in this culture. Anytime someone asks me how I am, I often reply with one word - “busy”.
Now, busy can be good. Busy taking care of our families, busy in school, busy at our jobs, busy serving. All good things! But so many times, we let busyness become a distraction or an excuse. We forget about the dreams God put on our hearts because we are distracted with busyness, or we say we don’t have time for the assignments God has put on our hearts because we are busy.
There are other times that I think we use busyness as a shield. We’re afraid of what would happen if we began pursuing the dream God gave us, we’re terrified of what people will think of us if we step out and begin doing it, or we’re simply scared of failing at the assignment He has given us. So, instead of taking a step towards Jesus, we hide behind our “busyness”.
I want to encourage all of us to take a page from Jesus’ book.
Are you scared of failing? Do it anyways, because that’s what you have come out here for. Are you afraid of what people will think? Do it anyways, because that’s what you have come out here for. Are you too busy? Do it anyways, because that’s what you have come out here for.
Is it easy? No, but the best things rarely are (take childbirth for instance). I want to challenge each of us to take the next day or few days and really think. When we’re doing laundry (which I should probably do), think about it. When we’re washing the dishes, think about it. When we’re in the shower, think about it. When we’re driving, think about it. What is God asking each of us to do? What is our assignment from Him in this life or maybe just in this season of life? Let us identify it, write down steps we can take towards it; and, then, DO IT. Because, friend, that’s what we have come out here for.
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