What Happens When We Procrastinate?

“Later the others also came. ‘Lord, Lord,’ they said, ‘open the door for us!’ But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you’”—Matthew 25:11-12(NIV).


Did you know there’s a Procrastinator’s Club? They’ve never met because they keep postponing their meeting. We can laugh about putting things off. Some procrastinate because the project is daunting or boring. Others find better things to do. There are, of course, those who have procrastinated so long the pile of tasks grows into a mountain they’re afraid to tackle.

People procrastinate for different reasons. Psychologist Joseph Ferrari, Ph.D., identifies three basic types of procrastinators:

  • Arousal types, or thrill-seekers, who wait to the last minute for the euphoric rush.
  • Avoiders, who may be avoiding fear of failure or even fear of success, but in either case are very concerned with what others think of them; they would rather have others think they lack effort than ability.
  • Decisional procrastinators, who cannot make a decision. Not making a decision absolves procrastinators of responsibility for the outcome of events.

If you’re a procrastinator, can you relate to any of these? While I don’t consider myself a procrastinator, I do delay doing things I consider unpleasant, unimportant or not interesting.

Someday will be here sooner than you think.

We let things in our life pile up for various reasons, but in today’s world of social media and technology devices, it’s easier than ever to succumb to procrastination. We become distracted by the frivolous and foolish.

In Matthew 25:1-12, we read about 10 virgins, who took lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish, and five were prudent. The foolish five took lamps but took no oil. The prudent brought oil in flasks, along with lamps. The bridegroom was delayed and the 10 grew drowsy and fell asleep. At midnight, a shout announced the arrival of the bridegroom. All 10 virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. The foolish ones, whose lamps were running out of oil, asked the prudent to share. The prudent refused, saying, “No, there will not be enough for us and you too; go instead to the dealers and buy some for yourselves.”

Jesus’ parable compares the plight of the virgins and their lamps to the kingdom of heaven. While the five who were not prepared left to find oil for their lamps, the bridegroom invited the prudent into the wedding supper and closed the door. When the foolish five finally returned and knocked on the door the answer was not what they wanted to hear, “‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.’”

As believers, we know Christ will return at an unknown time. We must be ready. In the meantime, we are commanded to share with others the Good News about our Savior and Lord. We also need to forgive those who have hurt us, tell others we have taken for granted we love them and spend time with the lonely, the hurting and the unlovable. Don’t say, “Someday.”

Someday will be here sooner than you think. Are you procrastinating?

I always love hearing from my readers. Please feel free to leave a comment below or email me at carol@carolaround.com.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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2 thoughts on “What Happens When We Procrastinate?

  1. Thanks for this article Carol. I can positively identify myself as a procrastinator type 2 and type 3 ! I am learning however, to press in closer to God when I’m in the grip of procrastination, and it really helps! Procrastination actually helps me to realise how very dependant I am on God and that I can trust Him in and for all things.