Day 247: Sleep and Poverty (Proverb 5-6; 1 Corinthians 14:1-20)

I’m not a fan of ants. But God seems to use them as an example often. So, today, let’s talk about ants, sleep and working from home.

“Go to the ant, you sluggard! Consider her ways and be wise, which, having no captain, overseer or ruler, provides her supplies in the summer and gathers her food in the harvest. How long will you slumber, O sluggard? When will you rise from your sleep?” -Proverbs 6:6-9

It’s like working for yourself (or, if you’re in college, then it’s studying). No one is there to tell you what time to wake up or what to accomplish each day. There is no manager telling you what goals to meet or how to see the big picture and plan for the future. It’s all up to you, and you alone.

At first glance, this sounds awesome (maybe that’s why 63 percent of 20-somethings aspire to start their own businesses). But ask anyone whose done it, and they’ll tell you that it takes a lot of self-discipline and motivation. Otherwise, the day passes by too quickly and it turns out you spent the entire day in your pajamas internet surfing and watching netflix while answering a few emails.

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There is absolutely nothing wrong with a day off here and there. We’ve talked often about the importance of rest. But there is a difference between rest and laziness. It’s the person who sleeps in once a week on Sunday versus the one who rarely rises before noon and even then, their days are slow and unproductive.

This passage isn’t telling you not to sleep (in fact, the Bible says that God blesses those he loves with sleep). Instead, it warns us against the dangers of laziness and too much sleep. It’s not about rising up at the crack of dawn and working yourself to the bone until long past midnight, seven days a week. But more about balance – knowing when to work, when to rest, when to make yourself get out of bed, and how to plan strategically for your present and your future so that your family is provided for and taken care of.

Is there an area of your life where you’re not exercising control over that is leading you to physical, mental or spiritual poverty?  What action steps can you take today to “sleep less” in that area of your life?

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