January 31, 2011

Lazy hands make a man poor, but diligent hands bring wealth.

Proverbs 10:4 NIV


January 31, 2011

There are many ways in which a person can become poor, and laziness is one way we will discuss today. If you are poor and reading this devotional, I want to tell you right now I am not trying to make myself look like a saint. I am just going to tell you like it is.

I lived in an apartment in Morris, Illinois for several months. While I lived there, the full-time job that I had paid me exactly what the rent was each month. I had to get a second job in order to pay for utilities and food. I would wake up each morning at 4:30 and be out the door by 6:30. I got up early so that I could continue to spend the first hour of the morning with God. Then I got ready for my part-time job and drove to the bank. I worked from 6:30 until 2:30, 4 days a week. After work I would drive back home and eat a bowl of cereal. I would then start up my computer and work my full-time job, which was doing medical billing and management. I ate my dinner at the computer and around 10:00 when I was done I would go to bed. I did that for several months. I tithed to the church and I put a little bit of money in the bank. At the end of those months, God provided another job and apartment that was closer to my children. My diligent work brought me wealth, not wealth according to the world, but wealth according to me.

There is another woman who I will call Marcy that found herself in a situation much like my own. Marcy decided that she would move from relative to relative until she found that perfect job. She is still not settled in a home. She doesn’t have a job either. She is poor, on welfare and food stamps. The other people she lives with are in the same boat. They all sail around in poverty and pity themselves. I don’t pity them at all, they are lazy. There is nothing medically or physically wrong with any of them. All of them are perfectly capable of going out and getting a job. All of them are waiting for that perfect job.

My first full-time job was medical billing and management. My second job was a bank teller. Now I have to be honest with you, I hated being a bank teller. You get paid minimum wage and are expected to protect a vault with millions of dollars in it. Not only that but you have to make sure your own drawer balances out and that is a lot easier said than done. In the months that I worked at the bank, I think my drawer balanced only one time. I hated that job! I worked as a bank teller when I lived in Morris not because I wanted to, but because I had to in order to pay my utilities and eat and when I say eat, I mean cereal or soup.

To be honest I have no sympathy for Marcy and her roommates. I think it is a crime that they are on welfare and food stamps. I realize that right now the economy is bad and there are not a lot of jobs out there but there are still jobs. The jobs might not be perfect and they probably pay a whole lot less than expected, so they may have to get two jobs. If they work two jobs, that is not the worst thing that can happen to them. No one wants to work two jobs, I certainly didn’t want to, but I did. I worked two jobs and I pulled myself out of poverty. Marcy and her friends just sink deeper into poverty.

Laziness is just one way a person can be poor and this type of poverty is completely avoidable. I wanted to get that out there first so that all of you would understand that I understand there are lazy people out there. Today we addressed them. In the following weeks we will discuss others who live in poverty and how they got there. Little by little we will address the poor and learn what it is God would want us to do with them. What do I think God wants us to do with those like Marcy? Stop paying them for being lazy and we can do that by stopping programs like welfare, which not only keeps people trapped in poverty but creates poverty acceptable mentality. There are so many other ways to assist those who really need help and this system has proven itself ineffective. I realize I may not be politically correct in what I just wrote, but I looked and I don’t see anything like welfare mentioned in the Bible. Lazy hands do make a person poor, diligent hands should stop rewarding them.

In His love,

Michele Beck


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