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Friday June 15 – Sloth defined

Slothfulness casts into a deep sleep, and an idle person will suffer hunger. – Proverbs 19:15

Scripture reading: 2 Samuel 11

I heard that sloths sleep 15-20 hours a day. Physical laziness, a lack of ambition, a faltering imagination, are symptoms of a core lack of interest in God Himself. It is not necessarily a lack of activity; we have so much to do, so many gadgets to fiddle around on, so many TV channels to surf through. William Willamon writes,

“Failing to have our attention grabbed by anything of lasting value, our eyes, our minds wander, restlessly roving, failing to alight on anything worth having.”

I call it the David vs. Daniel phenomenon. In 2 Samuel 11, we find David growing rather apathetic as his kingdom has grown and his wealth has increased. He is surrounded by distractions and opportunities for pleasure. His lack of zeal and godly energy serve as gateway sins that end with lust, adultery, murder, lying, and much more.

Daniel, on the other hand, the teenaged exile in the land of Babylon, one who we might excuse much more for lacking in energy and passion, fights to maintain his grip on God. His refusal to eat the delicacies at the king’s table is not ultimately a matter of fidelity to Jewish dietary laws. He works hard to maintain his identity in a pagan, ungodly world.

Where is your passion for God’s Word, for the kingdom of Jesus Christ? Have you fallen into a spiritual malaise? What’s wrong with us when we can spend hours on Facebook but have trouble spending ten minutes of quality time getting to know our Savior more? Have we become bored with God?

Suggestion for prayer

“Invigorate my love that it may rise worthily to Thee, tightly entwine itself round Thee, be allured by Thee.” – The Valley of Vision: Journeying On

This daily devotional is available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional. Rev. Mark Stewart serves the Burlington URC in Burlington, WA.

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