“Laziness Never Leads to Godliness”—Donald Whitney

While serving as a pastor in the Chicago area, Donald Whitney completed the doctor of ministry degree at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and penned Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life, which was widely distributed by both the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Promise Keepers. Since then, he has authored five other books, with forewords from such evangelical leaders as J. I. Packer, John MacArthur, and James Montgomery Boice.
In recent years, Whitney has been a professor of biblical spirituality at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City, Missouri, and at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, where he now serves. As his web site, www.biblicalspirituality.org, reveals, he has an extensive speaking and writing ministry, and as the following selection from his first book indicates, he makes no apology for his crowded schedule. He argues that a serious Christian is typically a busy Christian.
I’ve come to the conclusion that, with rare exceptions, the Godly person is a busy person. The Godly person is devoted to God and to people, and that leads to a full life. Though never frantic in pace, Jesus was a busy Man. Read Mark’s gospel and notice how often the word immediately describes the transition from one event in Jesus’ life to the next. We read of Him sometimes ministering all day and until after dark, then getting up before dawn to pray and travel to the next ministry venue. The gospels tell of occasional nights when He never slept at all. They tell us He got tired, so tired that He could sleep in an open, storm-tossed ship. Crowds of people pressed upon Him almost daily. Everyone wanted time with Him and clamored for His attention. None of us knows “job-related stress” like the kind He continually experienced. If Jesus’ life, as well as that of Paul, were measured against the “balanced life” envisioned by many Christians today, they would be considered workaholics who sinfully neglected their bodies. Scripture confirms what observation perceives: laziness never leads to Godliness.1

1 Donald S. Whitney, Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life (Colorado Springs: NavPress, 1991), 236.

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