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Are You Roasting Your Prey?

By June 30, 2021 August 12th, 2021 No Comments

A lazy person does not roast his prey,
But the precious possession of a person is diligence. — Proverbs 12:27 NASB

Let’s Talk About Work

We’re nearing the end (hopefully) of the COVID-19 pandemic, and so many businesses have “We’re Hiring!” signs posted on their storefronts. Restaurants are closing this month, not because of the virus, but because they can’t find workers! 

If I’m being honest, I don’t want to work as much as I used to. When I was younger, I wanted to make sure people knew I was an incredibly hard worker. Now that I’m in my 50’s, I’m slowing down. I feel lazy a lot more often. I can really dwell on my patio or recline on my couch. Streaming movies is a fantastic invention!

The Lord, however, snapped me out of my laziness by dealing with me through the Holy Spirit, my husband, my friends, and the Word. The Lord essentially shouted at me to stop wasting time through Proverbs 12

Read Proverbs 12 and reflect on the consequences we face when we fail to do our work. Below are the verses that deal with work ethic:   

One who works his land will have plenty of bread,
But one who pursues worthless things lacks sense. — Proverbs 12:11 NASB

Work leads to provision for our needs. Our pursuit of worthless things, perhaps like social media, is senseless. 

A person will be satisfied with good by the fruit of his words,
And the deeds of a person’s hands will return to him. — Proverbs 12:14 NASB

Our good words can satisfy us, and our good works will return to us. What we say and do turns around and comes back to us. What are we putting out? When it returns, will it satisfy us or leave us hungry?

The hand of the diligent will rule,
But the lazy hand will be put to forced labor. — Proverbs 12:24 NASB

If we are diligent, more responsibility will be given to us. A more “important” job is implied. On the other hand, if we are lazy, we will only get to do the hard labor, likely for someone else’s benefit.  

A lazy person does not roast his prey,
But the precious possession of a person is diligence. — Proverbs 12:27 NASB

This verse is the one that convicted me the most. I’ve already been given the resources to do what the Lord has called me to do. I have my “prey” in my hands, but I have not been “roasting” it. 

What We Do with Our “Prey”

I have not put the gifts the Lord freely gave to me to their proper use. My “prey” is wasting away, set aside, ignored. The Lord lavished resources on me, but I’ve turned my head in another direction. 

I’ve acted like a spoiled bratreceiving a gift of great value, but setting it aside after the excitement of something new wore off. I’ve been chasing after the next gift or looking around at the gifts bestowed upon others. 

All the while I’ve failed to employ one of my most precious possessions: the ability to be diligent. 

Diligence and Excuses

Diligent is defined as being “steady, earnest, and energetic”.

Diligence, working at something, does not require perfection. Diligence does not imply award-winning, “going viral”, or best-selling.  Diligence is simply steady work. With my heart. With energy. 

There are no obstacles in the way of diligence for me. There is nothing stopping me from being diligent with the gifts and resources the Lord has provided. I can work. I can do my job. I can exercise my gifts. I can use my resources. 

The only thing stopping me is excuses. I have a large pile of them: job, money, energy, perfectionism, tiredness, busyness, family, church, time, etc. 

Sound familiar? What excuses are you using? 

Pursuing Diligence

Yet, Proverbs 12 guides us to pursue diligence, we are to steward our resources, do the work needed, and apply our energy towards using what the Lord has provided us. 

For me, this means writing what the Lord reveals to me in Scripture, and helping others use the Word of God to heal their deepest wounds. In order to do this work in a steady, earnest, and energetic way, I need to start putting studying and writing into the “first” position on my to-do list each day. 

Just because God does not email me, text me, respond to my social media posts, hire me as His lawyer, or ask me to help Him pass the bar exam, shouldn’t mean His work only gets done if I have time at the end of the week. 

Because my “day job” involves tangible needs and financial rewards that pay the mortgage and keep the lights on, I tend to put it first. I come from a hard-working, farming and manufacturing, rural community. We are practical people. I approach the day thinking “what needs to be done.” When I prioritize what needs to be done, this physical world trumps my spiritual work. I’m sad to say that earning money often kicks a task to the top of my to-do list. 

Seeking His Kingdom First

But, Jesus taught us how to handle our to-do list differently: 

“No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth. — Matthew 6:24 NASB

. . . 

But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these [physical needs, like food and clothing] will be added to you.” — Matthew 6:33 NASB

The work the Lord has given me to doeven though it doesn’t come with a paycheckshould come first. My physical needs will be met if I pursue Jesus first. 

After feeding the 5,000, many people were searching for Jesus. Jesus, however, rebuked them for seeking bread to fill their bellies rather than seeking Him: 

Jesus answered them and said, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled. 27 Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal.” 28 Therefore they said to Him, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?” 29 Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.” — John 6:26-27 NASB

Our spiritual work, “food which endures to eternal life” should get first place on our to-do list. The “work” of God starts with believing in God and in Jesus. Helping others understand that Jesus offers eternal life is every Christian’s work. 

God has given each Christ-follower certain gifts to use for the Kingdom of God. These gifts are “prey,” already caught in our nets, that we are responsible for “roasting” with the priceless possession of diligence (Proverbs 12:27 NASB).

What work has God asked you to do in a steady, earnest, and energetic way? What “prey” is not getting “roasted” because you are not being diligent?

For even more from Kim Erickson, check out her book His Last Words: What Jesus Taught and Prayed in His Final Hours (John 13-17).

Imagine knowing you only have several more hours to live. Picture the faces of your loved ones gathered around you. Allow the emotions to rise up in your heart.

What would you say?

John 13–17 records Jesus’ last words to the disciples before His death, revealing what was most important to Him. When we study those words and prayers today, we enter deep into the heart of Jesus and come away changed: overwhelmed by the love of God, inspired to follow Him, and empowered to spread the gospel.

Kim Erickson

Kim Erickson

Kim Erickson is an attorney, practicing immigration law, and lives in Florida with her husband, Devin, and son, Ethan. She began following Christ after the death of her three-year-old son. Jesus and the Bible saved Kim from the pit of grieving the loss of a child. Kim began a writing and teaching ministry to help other women find outrageous joy from a deeper relationship with God. You can learn more at or reach out to her directly at [email protected]

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