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Do The Work

The sluggard says, “There is a lion in the road! A lion is in the open square!” As the door turns on its hinges, so does the sluggard on his bed.
–Proverbs 26:13-14

In Nehemiah 3, we see the final step to getting things done and turning your dream into reality, and that is implementation. The key phrase here is “do it.” Look at Nehemiah 3:1: “Then Eliashib the high priest arose with his brothers the priests and built the Sheep Gate; they consecrated it and hung its doors.” There came a time, after all their investigation, their motivation, their delegation, and their organization that they actually had to begin the work. That is true for whatever the project is that you are involved in. There comes a time after planning and praying and organizing that you just have to begin.

It is hard sometimes to begin something. I am not a physicist, but I understand this principle. It takes more energy to get an object moving than to keep an object moving. It takes more energy to get a car moving from a dead stop than to keep it going down the highway. It takes more energy to get an airplane off the runway and into the air than to keep it in the air. And many times it takes a lot more energy for us to begin doing something than to keep doing something.

The sluggard, the lazy person, he understands that–that is why he never begins anything. Look at Proverbs 26:13-14: “The sluggard says, ‘There is a lion in the road! A lion is in the open square!’ As the door turns on its hinges, so does the sluggard on his bed.” The sluggard always has a reason for not beginning a project.

That is why I have learned personally, whether I am preparing a sermon, or writing a book, or trying to do my income tax, that instead of waiting around for motivation to hit me suddenly, the easiest thing is just to begin doing something. If you begin doing something in that direction, pretty soon motivation will come, and it will hit you like a lightning bolt. John Bruner said it this way: “Motivation is like love and happiness. It’s a byproduct. When you’re actively engaged in doing something, the motivation to keep on doing it sneaks up and zaps you when you least expect it.” Just like Nehemiah and his workmen, there comes a time that we actually have to begin. We have to do the work.


Today’s devotion is excerpted from “How To Eat An Elephant” by Dr. Robert Jeffress, 2010.

Scripture quotations taken from the (NASB®) New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1971, 1977, 1995, 2020 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


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