Neglect

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It is a mistake to be too busy with anything, especially enjoyable, rewarding things (ministry, helping others, work, sport or hobbies) and neglect your responsibilities in crucial areas.  These include fellowship with God, time with family and duties in the home.  Unless the correct priority is given, on

 Neglect leads to forgetting; the failure                                 to ‘do’ is passive rebellion

a regular basis, to quality time with God and family these will suffer the consequences of neglect and risk the foundations crumbling.  A Christian is to live out their faith in the home situation before meeting other needs or else it is a poor recommendation (Mt 15:5,6; 1 Tim 5:4,8).  Faith and works are both essential aspects of Christianity and so neither should be neglected (Jas 2:14, 4:17). We should be balanced in all areas of life – spiritual, physical, social, and mental. Mature Christians do not neglect but develop and practice all the Christian disciplines, and grow in the fruit of the Spirit. Neglecting or failing to meet our responsibilities in one area is often compensated for in excess attention to another. This escapism from what we dislike needs to be addressed.

“I meditate on your laws and consider your ways. I will not neglect your Word” (Ps 119:15,16). “Be careful to do everything written in it…” means give it your full attention, do not disregard or ignore its teachings if you want your Christian life to be successful (Josh 1:8). Don’t just hear God’s Word without putting it into practice (Mt 7:26,27; Jas 1:22).  Don’t make excuses why you think you can neglect your responsibilities in life – because God will hold you accountable.

Don’t overlook, be careless about, or consider it optional to gather together with other Christians to encourage each other nor be slack in using the giftings God has given (1 Tim 4:14; Heb 10:25). We will be held accountable for the failure or neglect to warn the wicked to turn from their evil ways (Ezek 3:18-21).

Don’t be like the Pharisees who were so particular to do the minutest things in some areas that they neglected to attend to other important issues (Mt 23:23). The early church leaders recognised it would not be right to abandon their primary calling to address an area that others could fulfill (Act 6:2-4). Similarly we must guard that our time, talents and resources are not being diverted to things which are not our responsibility, for in effect this neglecting His call on our lives. 

See also: attention, balance, careless, escapism, failure, ignore, obligations, priority, rebellion, responsible/responsibilities, spiritual disciplines.


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