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  • Writer's pictureEli Schnell

Is There a Lion in the Street?

Updated: Jan 16, 2023

The Coronavirus has defined 2020. What began with a panicked shutdown of everything has extended into a slow burn of shortened store hours and mandatory facemasks. Often I have wondered, “When will life return to normal again?” The answer may be, “Never.” This may be a world-altering event that shifts the way society functions forever. It is also possible that these events will soon be ancient history, like so many other news stories (is Australia still on fire?). As we move forward, consider this statement from Proverbs 26:13: “The sluggard says, ‘There is a lion in the road! A lion is in the open square!’”

Consider the speaker to understand the meaning of this proverb. This is the sluggard, the one who is slow to move and idle whenever possible for as long as possible. The next proverbs bring the picture of the sluggard into sharper focus:

"As the door turns on its hinges, So does the sluggard on his bed. The sluggard buries his hand in the dish; He is weary of bringing it to his mouth again. The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes Than seven men who can give a discreet answer."

The sluggard lies in bed through the day, finding no rest, yet he refuses to rise. When he rises, he eats until he becomes bored of that most self-serving act. He is a lazy, miserable person whose life is a joyless, out of sync mess, yet he considers himself to be the wisest of all. His desire to do nothing defines him.

The sluggards of the world will continue to proclaim “There is coronavirus in the road! A carrier is in the open square!” long after the danger has passed, simply so that they can continue excusing themselves from returning to the obligations of normal life.

Rather than joining their sluggish ranks, listen to Proverbs 6:6, and learn from the ant! Find ways to be productive in your off days. Seek out new and different work. Don’t waste your time turning in your bed. Get up and do good today!

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