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Quick: think of five tasks you have been putting off over the past month. What else comes to mind?
Maybe even fear?
These thoughts can be overwhelming and you might even spend more energy avoiding the chore–compounding the stress—than you would if you just got it done.
Our spiritual lives can also be porous with procrastination. That invitation you received from God to deepen relationship, discern a vocation or consider a new ministry opportunity? Is it buried under the pile of bills you have to pay? Is it where anxiety—trepidation of change that holds one back from even thinking about possibilities much less taking an actual step—can also be found? It can lead to worry about failing: I'm not the right person for the call ... I'm not good enough ... I don't have the courage or skills necessary for what might come next.
One of my favorite prophets, Jeremiah, had what he thought was an answer to God’s call (and plenty of reasons why the time wasn’t right and how he just wasn’t cut out for it anyway). Yet he could no longer put off the decision nor deny it. We hear in his story (Jeremiah 1:1-9) how excuses don’t work for God. God helps us to see inside the possibilities life can offer if you take the first step—even if it feels like the biggest risk of your life.
Have you invited God into the task you’re putting off?
Are you procrastinating in the discernment of vocation, afraid to take that next step?