“The desire of the slothful killeth him; for his hands refuse to labour.”
There is much in the Bible about the sluggard or slothful man. A slothful person is lazy, procrastinates, and makes excuses for his unwillingness to work. One might think that since the slothful man does not want to work, he has no desire to achieve or improve. Yet, the Bible says his desire is killing him. He wants to have certain things; however, because “his hands refuse to labour,” his desire only tends to frustrate him. He would rather do nothing and have nothing, than to work and accomplish something.
God wants us to understand the value of hard work. It is honorable to work and disgraceful to refuse to labor. We all have heard complaints lamenting the fact that too few people are willing to work. This is an interesting phenomenon in our country. We hear that many people are without a job; but at the same time, employers are always looking for dependable workers. As parents and leaders, we should be teaching and training those under our care to see the dignity of honest labor. The opinion that the world owes us something or that our government is responsible to meet the needs of the lazy is wrong. The slothful man’s dreams will never come true because he is not willing to work for them.
There is nothing wrong with seeking to prosper or having an ambition to succeed, especially when we want our successes to bring honor and glory to God. However, effort, toil, diligence, and discipline are the things dreams are made of. It takes work for dreamers to reach their goals and accomplish their objectives. For instance, one does not grow spiritually to maturity without a great deal of discipline and effort. We are to exercise ourselves unto godliness. A successful Christian family does not come about by desire alone. The desire must be accompanied by determination and effort. To reach others with the Gospel message and help believers become all they are capable of becoming takes the investment of time and concern from others.
Many believers would like to have a more fruitful life for Christ, a stable and godly home, and a more effective ministry. Yet, their desire is only making them miserable because their hands refuse to labor. To see our godly objectives realized, we must roll up our sleeves and get to work.