Probing Proverbs 10:4-5 Lazy people are soon poor; hard workers get rich. A wise youth harvests in the summer, but one who sleeps during harvest is a disgrace.
Truth is best understood in simplicity. That is one of the warning lights we need to remember, the more complicated a teaching is, the greater the chance that lies are weaved throughout it. If you look at how Jesus taught, it was very simple. That does not mean that the truths taught are easy to understand, many times they are not, but what is taught is not hidden in “complications.”
Something complicated makes it hard to understand what the point is. With Jesus it was easy to understand what He said, what was difficult is what exactly did He mean! This is important, Truth will always be simple, so you can understand what it is stating, however, you may need to apply yourself to understand its complete meaning. Lies, on the other hand, are complicated so that you will be confused as to what the point is. If you cannot even get the initial point, you will never be able to understand the core meaning, nor be able to test the validity of its truth. Due to the fact that Truth is simple, you can understand the point being made and if you chose to, you can meditate and study to understand the depth of it’s meaning, which allows you to experience Truth that changes you. Most of the Proverbs are also this way.
This passage’s point is simple – If you are lazy you will lose what you have, if you apply yourself you will gain. If you are wise you will be ready when it comes time to collect the fruit of your labor, if you go through life unconscious you will miss the time to harvest and you will be ashamed. This makes perfect sense and is not difficult to understand.
However, after understanding the obvious point, when trying to apply this passage to our own life, meditation is required. Let’s define the words.
Lazy – רְמִייָה (rĕmîyâ) slackening, deceit
· When you think about it this really nails the point! Many of us understand that when we are lazy we are slack in our life, but how many of us understand that we are actually deceiving ourselves! We think we will accomplish our desires without any effort…we will discover a hard truth in the end and be very disappointed.
Hard worker - חָרוּץ (ḥārûṣ) sharp, diligent.
· The idea of being sharp here is very good. We consider a sharp person to be one that is at their best! When we do anything at our best level, no matter the circumstantial out come, we will sense the gain, because we rose to the level of excellence.
Wise - שָׂכַל (śākal) wise(ly), understand, prosper.
· When we understand momentum in life, we will be ready to harvest whatever the fruit is.
Sleeps - רָדַם (rādam) be asleep, be unconscious.
· Nothing worse than drifting through life – when we do that, we will miss much of what God had intended.
As I consider this passage the Holy Spirit can bring quite a few applications to my heart.
§ Where am I deceiving myself by my lack of effort or discipline?
§ When I go after something, do I try to be the best I can be?
§ Have I meditated on Scripture in a way that equips me to understand how life works and prepare me to grab a hold of opportunity?
§ Am I intentional in life or do I just let it happen?
Now take these questions and seek for specific areas in your life that you can measure where you are.
One that really spoke to me has to do with the Harvest. Not the one concerning food, money or material issues. The Harvest of souls! Jesus said:
John 4:34–38 Jesus said to them, “My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me and to accomplish His work. “Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look on the fields, that they are white for harvest. “Already he who reaps is receiving wages and is gathering fruit for life eternal; so that he who sows and he who reaps may rejoice together. “For in this case the saying is true, ‘One sows and another reaps.’` “I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored and you have entered into their labor.”
When I consider the state of fallen humans, their need for God and lack of understanding how much God desires a relationship with them – I am challenged that I cannot deceive myself that someone else will share the Word, I must be the one. Am I living as close to God as I could? This will make my life sharp and attractive to those seeking answers and looking for hope. Am I allowing the Holy Spirit to sensitize me to those that really want to know more about God? As I watch humans He will teach me how to discern when they may be open to have an encounter with God. Lastly, am I looking to share God’s love or only hoping it happens?
A lot to chew on for me…but I love how the Word attacks my heart and challenges my spirit! Becoming more like Him is the greatest adventure anyone could ever experience!
How about you? Do you read the Word to just get it over with, or do you seek to allow it to change you? What was the last thing in your life the Scripture spoke to? What did you do about it? Do you invite the Holy Spirit to join you in your discovery of the Word of God? Describe what that looks like.