Saturday, November 14, 2015

Opportunity Knocks

When you make a promise to God, fulfill it without delay because God has no pleasure
in fools. Fulfill what you promise.

-- Ecclesiastes 5:4 
"Tomorrow is the busiest day of the week," says the old Spanish proverb. And famous author and humorist Mark Twain put it this way: "Never put off until tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow."

They're referring of course to procrastination, Opportunityor what someone once described as "the grave in which opportunity is buried." Procrastination afflicts all cultures, genders and age groups. Ohio State University reports that people tend to embrace it when they perceive a task as being hard, inconvenient or even scary. The reaction is to replace important tasks with low priority substitutes and delay the tough stuff for another day. There's even a term called crooked thinking that describes the illogical--although predictable--way that procrastinators justify their behavior!

Procrastinators may also use their sense of perfectionism, inadequacy or discomfort to put off doing indefinitely what really needs to be done immediately. But the longer the delay with facing the uncomfortable, the worse this pattern becomes. And eventually...nothing gets done. Like they teach in high school physics class, a body at rest tends to stay at rest...unless there's something to put it in motion.

What will it take to put our own uncomfortable life issues in motion--rather than keeping them motionless on the back burner? Once God alerts us to an opportunity, we should respond to it. He might open our eyes through the words of a sermon, a conversation with another Christ-follower...or maybe even an unexpected interaction with a total stranger. But by whatever circumstance, the next move is ours.

Procrastination isn't a viable option--particularly in situations where action (or inaction) has serious life consequences. We need to respond to opportunities by taking that hard first step of faith.

Is your opportunity a conversation that you need to have, a relationship that you need to fix...or maybe a destructive one that you need to end? The truth is that "some day" is really another way of saying never.

So why not start now? Whatever the situation may be, no one's promising that it will be easy. But rest assured: you won't be alone.

"In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you," we read in 2 Corinthians. "I tell you, now is the time of God's favor, now is the day of salvation."

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