There’s a slippery slope often hidden in the mundane of ordinary living. Doing the daily grind, watching progress crawl at a snails pace — it can erode sacred parts of you. This is the slippery slope of complacency.
The dictionary defines Complacency (noun) as a feeling of smug or uncritical satisfaction with oneself or one’s achievements; a lack of concern.
The Bible Dictionary defines it like this: A self-satisfied state of negligence or carelessness, especially in relation to one’s personal situation.
Either way, Complacency is a subtle poison to your dreams. I know, because I swallowed that toxic stuff.
I can’t say I was pleased with where I was nor where I or am in the pursuit of my goals- in fact- I was quite dissatisfied, especially last year. Worse. I was discouraged. Prioritized rojects seemed indelibly on hold and me powerless to change the outcome. I was giving up. Except, It wasn’t a “quit because I failed” – it was a “quit because I’d grown complacent in the wait”. I quit hoping for change.
Zephaniah quotes God about this kind of complacency in verse 12 of Chapter 1.
At that time I will search Jerusalem with lamps and punish those who are complacent, who are like wine left on its dregs, who think, “The Lord will do nothing either good or bad. Their wealth will be plundered…”
As hard as that stings, that was me. I figured God would either do it or not and I no longer cared. It was going to happen or it wasn’t. I decided to numb myself to either outcome.
Friends, that’s a horribly slow death.
When we numb ourselves to the tension between work and results, we sink into the sludge of apathy. We grow indifferent to the power of hope and the influence of inspiration.
Get the Defibrillator
Indifference is like spraining your ankle at the gym, your motivation takes a back seat. You’ll slow down, procrastinate and eventually give up; your dream, your goal, your idea dying with it.
My dream is to write books and along the way it looks like blogging (grin) and guest posting. Right now that means linking arms with others and writing collectively. It’s risky yes, because it puts your words at the mercy of another’s idea. But, like dawning the workout outfit and getting in front of the private trainer, you gotta do it. I put all my stock in those projects, which as it turns out, is a set up for spraining an ankle. When it happened I sat on my keister and stagnated on the couch.
Then my loved ones started talking about how it was time to find “another hobby”making the digression of this complacency quite evident. I’d been grieving the loss of those projects so much I’d forgotten the joy in pursuing a dream at all. The probability of loosing my dream all together was enough of a jolt to get me off the couch and find another way, despite my sprained ego.
Waking Up from Complacency
Just as a sprained ankle doesn’t mean a permanent end to the goal of being fit, a period of wait in the development of your calling doesn’t mean you should give up either.
Over and over and over again the Bible says God is faithful. And He is. Perhaps He’s got a different time table than you, or a few detours to pick up new skills you were unaware of, but He is always faithful. If He said it, He’ll do it. If He called you, He’ll equip you.
Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land, do what he commands. Zephaniah 2:3a
Seek Him. Return to who He called you to be and obey what He gives you to do today. For me, it is simply writing – anything – every day. He called me to write, so writing is what I’ll do. I’ll grow and develop and learn to craft better sentences. Whatever He’s called you to friend, whatever dream or goal planted in your heart, go after it. Believe it is for you and that He will bring it to fruition. Be faithful in today so tomorrow will arrive full of opportunity, full of life.
The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but rejoice over you with singing. Zephaniah 3:17