Procrastinators focus on problems. The diligent focus on solutions.
There is an element of dishonesty in procrastination. When we procrastinate, we lie to ourselves to avoid work, instead of facing the facts. We lack the integrity to admit we would rather delay action then expend energy. We aren’t mature enough to recognize that the cause of all our never-started/never-finished projects isn’t our circumstances. It’s our character.
When we procrastinate, we treat all time alike. We act as if we don’t realize that each season requires different work. To have food for winter, crops must first be planted, cultivated, harvested, and stored. If we defer any one of those steps, we’ll come up empty, like the Egyptian king about whom God said, “He has missed his opportunity” (Jeremiah 46:17).
Jesus knew every moment was unique. When the Father presented an opportunity to carry out his will, he knew he had to act. He couldn’t let opposition drive him to delay what had to be done right away.
The great English playwright and poet William Shakespeare wrote of strategic moments that must be grabbed at once:
There is a tide in the affairs of men,
Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune,
Omitted, all the voyages of their life
Is bound in shallows and in miseries:
And we must take the current when it serves,
Or lose our ventures.[i]
When the tide is high, it’s time to board the ship and begin the voyage. The tide won’t wait—and neither will strategic opportunities to be used by God. When we see opportunities to carry out the Father’s work, we must act. If we’ll do that one moment at a time, we’ll be able to pray as Jesus did at the end of his life, “I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do” (John 17:4).
[i] From “Julius Caesar,” act 4, scene 3, quoted in David McNally, Even Eagles Need a Push, (New York: Dell, 1990), 223.