Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: PROCRASTINATE (08/04/16)
TITLE: On a Guilt Trip
By Elaine Hemingway
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There was the time when a dear friend was in hospital, and my intention was to visit the next day. Too late: his next day was no longer in this life. That is a heavy lesson to learn.
Now that age has presented some wisdom that goes with grey hair it is only in retrospect that I can repent of my failure to write letters. I remember my mother being unimpressed with what I thought was a modern technology improvement on the postman. I learnt to write e mails, which saved time and effort as I sent them to my brother for delivery and sharing with the rest of the family. But my mother wanted to watch for the postman and receive a letter of her own. I can only apologise when I meet her in Heaven.
How does our Lord feel in those circumstances when we know we should do something, but we put it off until a more convenient or opportune time? In Jeremiah 29:11 we read “I know the plans I have for you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Then we thwart those plans through disobedience or ignorance or failure to recognise when He is giving us direction.
A rich young man went to Jesus and asked, “What must I do to inherit eternal life?” When told to go, sell all he had, and give it to the poor, thus inheriting treasure in Heaven, he went away, sad. When did he realise his mistake? Too late!
Ten lepers met Jesus on the road to Jerusalem, as he went along the border between Galilee and Samaria. They wanted to be healed, and they were healed, but only one went back to Jesus praising God, and giving thanks.
Can you imagine the other nine, having a conversation later?
“Wish I’d gone back to give thanks to the man who healed us
“Yes; so do I. But I hear He left the area. Now we don’t have the option.”
Another said, “How ungrateful we must have appeared. And now we have lost the chance to give thanks.”
There was the man who was invited by Jesus to follow Him, but he first wanted to stick with the Jewish tradition of being around to bury elderly parents, so could only take up the invitation later. Too late! His opportunity was gone.
I believe that three of the enemies’ strategies are Compromising, Condoning and Procrastinating – all temptations that are so easily and readily fallen for. Perhaps the one most often unrecognised is Procrastination, for so often we can recognise with hindsight that a disobedient response to a call from God means a missed opportunity to join Him in His Work and to fulfil a part in His Perfect Plan.
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