English proverbs are short, concise sayings that express traditional truths. Many of them, religious and metaphorical in nature, offer sound, uplifting advice and consist of repetitive consonant sounds that make remembering them effortless. This week, we’ll focus on five traditional armchair convictions that connect with scriptural truths and encourage virtuous living.
Eighth Day of the Week
“Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.”
Proverbs 27:1, NIV
“Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.”
When my husband and I pulled into the driveway after our workout at the gym, I noticed that the ivy around the garage window still needed to be cut back. I’d mentioned it to him several times before, so when I pointed it out again I said, “Maybe it’s time for us to move to a smaller place.”
His quick response was, “I think it would be easier to cut the ivy.”
If you want to make an easy job seem hard, just keep putting it off. Today’s proverb from Thomas Jefferson is wise advice, but I must confess I’ve put off following it! The stark reality of my philosophy is more like that of Scarlett O’Hara in Gone with the Wind: “I can’t think about that right now. I’ll think about that tomorrow.” In fact, I was going to write this devotion yesterday, but I put it off until today. I wanted to write it last week, but this week seemed like a better time. Now I’m only a few days away from my submission deadline, and I’m feeling the time crunch.
Scripture tells us,
“Whoever watches the wind will not plant; whoever looks at the clouds will not reap”
If we wait for perfect conditions, we’ll never get anything done. We’ll just keep putting things off.
God gave the Promised Land, a land flowing with milk and honey, to the twelve tribes of Israel. Over a year later, seven tribes had still not entered into the land to receive their inheritance. In their eyes, the enemy seemed too great. It was easier for them to remain in their comfort zone on the opposite side of the Jordan River. In exasperation, Joshua asked, “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?” (Joshua 18:3).
Before we judge the Israelites too harshly for their disobedience, perhaps we should take inventory of our own lives. What has God asked you to do? What has He asked me to do? Will we press Him to say, “How long will you wait?”
Procrastination is a thief. It not only robs us of time – a precious commodity we cannot retrieve – it robs us of God’s blessings, the blessings obedience brings. God gives us seven days a week to get things done―Sunday through Saturday – but for many of us, the eighth day – Someday – is our most heavily scheduled.
Is there something you’ve been putting off? Let today be your Someday. Today is the day to make that phone call. Start your diet. Find a church. Write that letter. Say I’m sorry. Join the gym. Clean your fridge. Dine with a friend. Write your book, or simply say, “I love you.”