Wednesday, September 8, 2010


I was going to write this post last week, but I put it off until today…

(That’s a joke, friends…HA!)

Seriously, what’s the deal with procrastination? I hope I’m not the only one out there who deals with this problem (don’t worry, you can tell me about it later…)

I looked up the word “procrastination”:

Procrastination refers to the counterproductive deferment of actions or tasks to a later time. Psychologists often cite such behavior as a mechanism for coping with the anxiety associated with starting or completing any task or decision.

OK, that sounds about right…

Why do we do it? There are many reasons – fear of failure, fear of success, perfectionism, because we’re busy, because we’re afraid of criticism – just to name a few.

I was reading an article on the issue – it was quite informative. But one of the reasons listed for procrastination was this – IT WORKS!


The more I thought about it, the more that idea made sense. When I avoid doing a certain activity, my anxiety about that activity is dramatically reduced. It becomes easier to “put it on the back burner” and then fool myself into pretending it’s not there.

But here’s an “ugly truth” about myself – At times, I am also a “spiritual procrastinator.”

How so?

I’ve put off reading my Bible, or spending time in prayer, or talking to that neighbor, or going to that Bible Study, or attending church regularly, or…any number of other things. I’m sure some of you can fill in your own blanks…(you can, can’t you?! I’m not alone with this, am I?!)

As much as I could maybe “justify” my procrastinating habits in the “real world” – I couldn’t avoid facing the truth that when it came to spiritual matters, to my relationship with God, procrastination was really spiritual laziness and lack of discipline.


I came to the realization that procrastination was a clever and effective tool that Satan used:

to keep me from maturing in my faith
to keep me from staying close, and growing closer to God
to keep me from reaching out to others
to keep me mired in a “safety zone” of complacency


This year, with the power of the Holy Spirit prodding me and enabling me, I have added several Christian “disciplines” to my life.

Have I “arrived”? – CERTAINLY NOT!
Have I “grown”? – Oh, you better believe it!!

"Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today" – Thomas Jefferson.

It’s a good quote, and it’s true.

But I’ve got a better one –

“So run to win! All athletes are DISCIPLINED in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should.” (1 Corinthians 9:24-27)

I like how the idea is expanded in these notes:

“As Christians, we are running toward our heavenly reward. The essential disciplines of prayer, Bible Study, and worship equip us to run with vigor and stamina…Train diligentlyyour spiritual progress depends on it.” (From The Life Application Bible, NLT, c. 2004, by Tyndale House Publishers).

We can’t do it in our own power, we can’t do it alone…

We need a “playbook” – God’s Word – and we need a “coach” – the Holy Spirit.

Oh Lord, forgive me for “putting off” so many things that are necessary in my spiritual life – so many things that are vital to my relationship with You. Help me do the things that You call me to do. Give me courage and self-discipline. Help me be a worthy athlete, Lord, ready to run my race – the race You have set before me… TODAY!!

Will you join me…today?!

BLOG = “Blessedly Leaning On God!”


  1. Hi Sharon,

    I was blessed in reading this post; emphasizing the need for spiritual discipline in my life.

    Blessings and peace.


  2. "Train diligently; your spiritual progress depends on it."

    I love that and think I want to put it on the refrigerator. (Cause I'm always looking at that refrigerator...)

    Couldn't help but think of the years that both of my daughters were in training for cross country. If you're serious about it, distance runners just can't procrastinate running all year and then try to build up their stamina a month before the season opens. (Especially here in Georgia because it's 100+ degrees the month before the season opens.) The girls needed to run all year to maintain that strength.

    Don't know why I rambled that, but it fits.
    Here's how:

    We don't want to try to "catch up" spiritually when the heat it on either.

    BTW, you made me laugh as usual with your banter on that vintage fabric post. I guarantee that my sister was hysterical. You crack her up. She has now started winking at me and saying, "just sayin'" when she's being witty. Then she smiles and says, "Sharon Kirby."

    You're famous!

  3. Oh Sharon - you could have signed this post with my name - that's how absolutely true it is for me.

    Procrastination is one of those things that I've struggled with for as long as I can remember. But when it comes to the things of God that's not an excuse. I still remember when I first heard that you can't be a disciple without discipline - it changed my whole perspective!

    Thanks for yet another great post!

  4. Sharon, so much meat to glean here from your post. And, of course, you're not alone my friend!!! I've never thought about how procrastination is a strategy used by the enemy. Saving this one for future reference. Thanks for sharing. God bless!

  5. all very interesting thoughts about procrastination. I know that if I don't get to my Bible reading on a daily basis (which I'm pretty good about doing anyway) in the mornings when I usually do it, it is hard to find the time during the day to "fit" it in. I find I need that time daily with our Lord to put me in the right perspective with all we deal with in our lives :)


  6. Sharon, what a great post!!! I definitely struggle with this... in many areas of my life. Prayer and Homeschooling plans, just to name a couple. You encouraged me with this... Thank you!!

    Also, thanks for checking out my blog and following. I pray that you would be encouraged by my humble musings.


  7. You are not alone! I have gotten terribly lax about reading the Bible. I used to be so diligent about getting up early and reading a few verses before the chaos of the day set in. Thank you for inspiring me to pick it up again, starting tomorrow morning first thing!

  8. MTJ - You're not alone...we ALL need spiritual discipline in our lives.

    Debbie - I loved the cross country analogy. I'm always looking for "word pictures" to help me grab concepts. This was a great one. Especially the part about not having to "catch up" spiritually. (Thanks, too, for your BTW comment - always a good thing to laugh!! :)

    Paula - You are so "right on" - we cannot be disciples without discipline. A perfect way to say it. Keep working on this "pesky" problem - I am, too.

    Wanda - Welcome! Glad I'm not alone in this. We have to be SO aware of ALL the enemy's tactics. Some are so subtle...(Thanks for joining me on my journey!)

    Betty - This year I'm reading through my Bible again. Yes, it really does change one's perspective on everything! There have been days when I felt like I literally RAN to my Bible - it was the only place to find peace.

    Shellie - Thank you for your comments. I really admire you for committing to homeschooling. That takes real dedication. So, I am very happy to have given you some encouragement. (Looking forward to reading your "humble musings!")

    Michelle - How wonderful! I will be praying for you to "keep up the good work!" I know it will make a has for me.

    As always, everyone - so glad to have spent part of this day with you.



"So [I] have been greatly encouraged in the midst of [my] troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith. It gives [me] new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord. How [I] thank God for you!" (1 Thessalonians 3:7-9)

Thanks for your comments - it is such a joy to be sharing my journey with friends like YOU!

(NOTE: Anonymous comments will be removed. Thank you for understanding.)