- What was the time when you worked the hardest in your life? What was the situation and circumstances that brought that about?
- Proverbs is filled with words about work and sloth. Two key passages about sloth and work are found in Proverbs 6:6-11 and 24:30-34. Read these Scripture passages out loud. For each of them, identify characteristics of sloth versus diligence. What would you say is the defining difference between a slothful person and a diligent person according to these two passages?
- In his message, Pastor Matt identified six characteristics of the sluggard and sloth. Which of these have you encountered in others or yourself? When or why?
- One characteristic is ‘chasing fantasies’ according to Proverbs 12:1 and 28:19. What do you think this means? What do you think the difference is between rightly pursuing a dream and chasing fantasies?
- Take some time to consider the five examples of diligence found in Proverbs: the Ant (6:6-8), the Farmer (10:4-5; 12:10-11; 28:19), the Hunter (12:27), the Servant (22:29), and the Judicious Wife (31:27). What distinguishes each of these? How is this different than the sluggard?
- In the midst of our current economic situation, many people are unemployed or under-employed. What does it mean for people in that life situation to be diligent and not slothful?
- At the other end of the spectrum, there are some people who may work too much without rest. What does God-honoring work and rest look like in your life?
- What elements of the sluggard do you see in your own life? What elements of the diligent do you see in your own life?Identify one practical way that you will respond to this study.
- Consider how you will move away from sloth and toward diligence in your daily life with God. Write it down, reflect on it, and put it into practice this week. If you are in a small group, discuss this with one another.