From Trent Ling:
Trent Ling shares matters that should be part of the conduct of disciples of Jesus. For a brief explanation of such postings, please see Conduct in God’s Household.
Many have reputations for being late, running late, showing late, late, late, late. People earn bad names in the arena of timeliness over the years and across the excuses. Sadly, the world operates so casually that perhaps nobody notices? However, for those paying attention, chronic tardiness not only rightly tarnishes the name of the late arriving, but also signifies their deeper spiritual troubles.
Those unable to arrive on time necessarily suffer shortages of self-discipline. As the Spirit grows self-control and self-discipline as its natural-born fruits (Galatians 5:22 and 2 Timothy 1:7), the lack of such demonstrates a snuffed, ignored, and grieved Spirit (Ephesians 4:30).
Beyond these self-disciplinary issues, even more readily visible deficits prevail in the tardy. Lack of preparation (thought, planning, estimating), a shortage of consideration (where is the care for those now left waiting and wondering), limited participation (getting caught up can literally take years), and substantially reduced reliability (lateness proves lack of learning, growing, and repenting) mark the lackadaisical. Nobody should ever aspire to be any of these.
Surely, a pre-announced absence or lateness would soothe the occasionally unavoidable scheduling conflict. And substantially unforeseen obstacles may pop up here or there. But, most assuredly, those usually running late lack the spiritual qualities to be on time and they should soberly be regarded as such.
On the flip side, arriving early can be as disruptive and improper as arriving late, especially when calling upon another’s home or business. Those who drain everything from every day likely have much to do other than to entertain discourteous early arrivals. All should intend to reach their destinations early, scrub off some time once in range, and then present themselves on time. This represents the ideal scenario.
Those who prepare, consider, and discipline themselves for a starting time will be ready to roll at the appointed hour. All should join them in hitting their timing marks. Do not lollygag and forsake punctuality, and do not impose by jumping the gun and showing up prematurely into the laps of those for whom the moment of giving undivided attention has not yet arrived.
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