This blog post is part of a series on the particular temptations we face as stay at home mums, and how to flee from those temptations.
Since God is the Author and Ruler of all life, he alone has the authority to determine right and wrong. That’s why it’s so important to stick to the Bible’s terminology and definitions when it comes to sin.
Using different terms for what God calls sin can be our way of trying to soften it, and make it not sound so bad.
The other risk is that we end up adding “sins” that aren’t in the Bible. If God doesn’t put something in the category of “wrong”, then it’s not wrong. And if God calls something sin, then we’d better not continue to entertain it in our lives.
The good news is that in Christ, we are free from sin – we don’t have to submit to our sinful desires any more!
Let’s not make excuses, but rather examine our hearts honestly before the Lord. Let’s flee from temptation and put to death any sin we have been allowing to continue.
Other posts in this series:
This is hard to admit because I feel like there’s a stereotype out there that stay at home mums are lazy, and I worry that sharing about this particular struggle will just give extra ammunition to people who already think that. However, I’m not blogging to make myself look good, but to testify to God’s goodness.
So here’s the truth – over my time as a stay at home mum, laziness has been a huge temptation for me. There have been times I have fought against this temptation, in God’s strength, and succeeded. And other times, I have given into my sinful desires in this area.
(I feel it’s important to add a little comment in there that I don’t want to load you down with false guilt, dear sisters. There are many times in life where rest needs to be the priority. In fact, we all need rest throughout our lives, to some degree! I don’t have the space in this post to go into the difference between godly rest and ungodly laziness. But if you honestly ask God to reveal and convict you of your sin, I’m confident that you will know in your heart whether this is a struggle for you or not.)
What’s wrong with laziness?
God has a lot to say about the sin of laziness in the Bible:
- “The desire of the sluggard kills him, for his hands refuse to labour.” Proverbs 21:25
- “For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.” 2 Thessalonians 3:10
- “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men” Colossians 3:23
- “Love not sleep, lest you come to poverty; open your eyes, and you will have plenty of bread.” Proverbs 20:13
- “Let the thief no longer steal, but rather let him labour, doing honest work with his own hands, so that he may have something to share with anyone in need.” Ephesians 4:28
- “Whoever is slack in his work is a brother to him who destroys.” Proverbs 18:9
- “A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.” Proverbs 6:10-11
Laziness is wrong because we are to serve God in all we do; because God made us to work and laziness goes against that design; and because laziness leads to ruin, spoil, and – ultimately – death.
When we don’t do the work God has given us to do, opting instead to pursue our own desires at any given moment, we are sinning against him. We’re actually disobeying his command and direction for our lives.
Allow me to flesh that out a little more…
What does laziness look like for a stay at home mum?
Laziness says “I don’t want to, therefore I won’t”. Laziness puts our ‘wants’ and desires ahead of doing what’s right – doing the good works God has given us to do.
At the heart, laziness is saying to God, “I’m the boss of my own life, not you. I will decide what I will do and when I will do it.”
Practically speaking, as a stay at home mum, this might look like:
- Using every spare moment to scroll through my phone instead of making progress on the myriad tasks that need doing.
- Giving the most energy and attention to the things I find fun or interesting, while doing the bare minimum on those tasks that are boring, but necessary.
- Constantly seeking entertainment and novelty.
- Needing to “get out of the house” every day.
- Only working hard when someone is going to notice, like right before my husband gets home or when guests are coming to visit.
- Constantly trying to get the kids involved in something on their own so I can relax.
Again, use discernment here. I’m not saying all those things I just listed are inherently sinful. But these are common ways that an attitude of laziness can manifest in our lives.
Free from sin
The reason laziness is such a common temptation for us as stay at home mums is because we are largely in control of how we spend our time. No one’s standing there supervising, making sure we get things done.
So we can easily give into temptation because there is no immediate consequence for doing so.
But if you’re still reading, I’ll assume you aren’t satisfied to continue that way. You’re convicted to flee from this temptation, not merely coexist alongside it.
Good news – not only has God already paid the price for your sin in this area (past, present and future!), he has not left you unequipped in your daily battle.
Armed with the knowledge that if you are in Christ, you are no longer under condemnation , you are now free to obey God and to flee from temptation .
How do we flee the temptation to be lazy?
You use the resources God has given you:
- You have the Holy Spirit, who is continually working in your heart to convict you of sin, empower you to fight sin, remind you of God’s word, and as a guarantee that God will not abandon you.
- You have God’s word, the Sword of the Spirit. Keep reading, memorizing and reminding yourself of God’s word in the Bible to help you remember the truth – laziness will never bear good fruit in your life. Write out some of the verses above and stick them in key places around your home.
- You have other Christians to help you bring this struggle into the light through confession and accountability. Find a friend to be an accountability partner in this area. Check in with each other every day via text message. Encourage each other to be faithful and hard workers. Pray for each other.
- You (might) have a husband who wants to help you grow as a Christian woman and to be a hard worker at home. So tell your husband that you don’t want to be lazy and ask him to pray for you in this, and to check in with you each day. I bet he will be glad to help!
- You have a purpose in life – to glorify God in everything you do. Remember to serve as though you are serving the Lord! While much of your work in the home goes unseen by humans, God sees everything. And it all matters to him. Remind yourself of this daily, and come back to this especially when you are tempted to be lazy.
- You have practical tools, like pen and paper, or even your phone. Make a plan for how you want to spend your time. Sometimes the problem is that we’ve been cutting ourselves some slack for so long, we just don’t know where to start. So make a list of what things need doing around the house and across your areas of responsibility, then refer back to the list throughout the day.
Remember, sisters, we are free in Christ! We are no longer under condemnation because we’ve been saved by grace.
We are now free to fight our sin and to do the good works God prepared in advance for us to do.
“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men” Colossians 3:23
Is laziness a temptation for you? What can you do to flee from it, starting today?
Let me know in the comments!