Pondering the Principles of Proverbs
"Hurry it up. We're burnin' daylight!"
He had to get his cattle to auction, but he had no help. He ended up hiring on a bunch of young boys to help him move the cows. It is at once, a coming-of-age, and heroic-journey story.
He who gathers in summer is a son who acts wisely,
But he who sleeps in harvest is a son who acts shamefully. (Pro. 10:5)
That term is out of use, and has been replaced with the term "slacker," which is quite popular, It has been the theme of numerous movies and was the basis for the hit TV series "Beavis and Butthead." There was also a period where the term was "skater," but then skateboarding became popular and the word took on a better meaning.
Basically, a slacker is someone who lacks what is known as the work ethic--the willingness to "git-r-done."
This proverb follows and flows from the previous (v.4), which was dealt with previously.
Why the contrast between acting wisely and acting shamefully? What does farming have to do with wisdom?
It's not so much about farming as it is about the universal principle of sowing and reaping. The phrase "sowing and reaping" is certainly related specifically to farming the earth, but the concept has taken on wide-ranging meaning into the rest of life's aspects.
Some call it karma. What goes around comes around. You get what you pay for.
We saw this contrast earlier when we were told to study ants.
Wisdom is here attached to something as simple as doing the right thing at the right time.
It is wise to do what is necessary when it is time to do it.
If you've ever lived in or near a farming community, then you have seen the practical application of this verse. When the crops are ready for harvest, the farmers work from "can to caint." The crops MUST be brought in before they are damaged by wet weather. Before the days of headlights, they worked from sunup to sundown.
Hence, if you weren't working while it was light, you were "burnin' daylight."
One of the marks of wisdom is the ability and willingness to do what is necessary BEFORE one takes one's leisure.
It seems, however, that a majority have adopted the travel agency's advertisement to "Play now. Pay later." Truth is, we will pay later for any slackness we allow now.
It is, indeed, shameful to be one upon whom others cannot depend. Those who do only what is required, only when told to are almost useless.
This verse provides a simple solution for growing in wisdom--do your work when it is time to do it, and do it thoroughly.
Practice it for a year and you will notice your wisdom increase.
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