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In my last week’s article on procrastination, I gave you practical tips on how to defeat this sinister productivity thief. As far as New Year’s resolutions go, please consider putting it on the top of your list. And I’m preaching to myself even as I type this post!
This week, I decided to follow-up with two biblical examples that should sharpen our attention on this particular problem. The Bible gives us two powerful stories from the Old Testament about two men of God who procrastinated.
Eli. This man’s story is found in I Samuel 2:12-36. Here’s a summary of his situation. “Eli was on Old Testament person who had some very modern problems. The recognition and respect he earned in public did not extend to his handling of his private affairs. He may have been an exalted priest, but he was a poor parent. His sons brought him grief and ruin. He lacked two very important qualities needed for effective parental discipline: firm resolve and corrective action. Eli responded to situations rather than solving them. And even his responses tended to be weak. God pointed out his sons’ errors, but Eli did little to correct them. The contrast between God’s dealing with Eli and Eli dealing with his sons is clear. God gave warning, spelling out the consequences of disobedience, and then acted. Eli only warned. Children need to learn that their parents’ words and actions go together. Both love and discipline must be spoken as well as acted out.” 
Eli procrastinated in regards to disciplining his sons for the wrongs they were perpetrating on Israel, and God judged him with the premature death of himself and both of his sons. The consequences of your procrastination may never be that harsh, but in managing your life more effectively, your consequences may keep you from the true joy of accomplishing your life-long goals.
David. The second story is about the most famous man in scripture, King David, found in the book of 2 Samuel chapters 13-19. David had many children, three of whom were Amnon, Tamar and Absalom. Amnon violated his sister Tamar, and Absalom convinced her to not say anything about it. Absalom seethed and plotted for a time when he could kill his brother for what he had done to Tamar. David was furious with Amnon but did nothing about it. David’s procrastination and neglect had several consequences. Several years later Absalom killed his brother Amnon and then rebelled against his father, only to be killed later in battle. David paid dearly for being an absent father.
Procrastination destroys any imagination or innovation you may have about a certain goal or project you need to accomplish. It will quietly move into your life, eat your time, sap your energy, delay your successes, and cause you to walk in fear. It may even do more serious damage, like cause you to lose your job, your spouse, or your career.
There are many ways to work on this giant in your life beyond practical tips. One critically important strategy is getting an accountability partner to work one-on-one with you in your personal life. Having someone who will lovingly confront you when you are delaying the obvious can help rescue you from Procrastination’s grip on your time and your life.