What image comes to your mind when you hear about complacency? My brother, my sister, the first symptom of complacency is satisfaction with things as they are. The second is rejection of things as they might be. In other words, complacency is a self-satisfied state of negligence or carelessness. In this chapter of the book of Zephaniah, the Lord shows us how dangerous complacency is. Indeed, the Bible says complacency can eventually destroy us: “For the waywardness of the simple will kill them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them” (Proverbs 1:32). As much as complacency grows out of a false security that creates a lukewarm faith, it can also lead us to take lukewarm actions that can slowly but surely destroy our relationships with God and people. How often do we fall into complacency because we feel safe in our work, we are sure of our strength or our knowledge, we feel safe because we have money and material goods. Then we start living a self-satisfied life and give up our humble dependence upon God for our sustenance.
The body of Christ is plagued with countless of complacent believers who value nothing but what they can get immediately, thus neglect taking faith and actions of faith to please God. Yes, how many are living in fornication or adultery while calling on the name of Jesus in all their prayers? How many put their needs and desires and themselves before God in times of plenty, but when times of need come they remember that God can be called upon fervently, day and night? How many fear their employer more than Master Jesus, so much that they would get to work even before working hours but to church services ‘when they can/when they have time/when they feel like it’ and ensure they are late enough to be noticed by God. How many spend more time exercising their tongue to speak curses upon their own lives and others through complaints and lies, gossips and slanders rather than praising Jesus? The sad reality is the ease with which people will do such things… exactly as an unbeliever saying ‘God does not exist’… But all these things are the result of complacency! An ideal gateway for the devil to make the children of God his puppets to ensure they follow him to hell unnoticed.
My friend, know it today: complacency takes roots in our lives when we do not have the fear of the Lord; it is a lack of honour and respect for God or for the others. Why? Explain to yourself why it would bother you to arrive late at work or at an appointment with someone (a mere human being) and it won’t bother you to be late at a church service? If it bothers you and you have not done anything about it, then the devil has made some great advanced work in you already… Yet, the Lord is warning us seriously: “Woe to you who are complacent in Zion, and to you who feel secure on Mount Samaria, you notable men of the foremost nation, to whom the people of Israel come!… You put off the day of disaster and bring near a reign of terror” (Amos 6:1 and 3).
My friend, today, examine yourself: “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you—unless, of course, you fail the test?” (2 Corinthians 13:5). In what areas do you tend to be complacent in your life, with your faith and the things of God? What would help you to overcome complacency in those areas? What the Lord calls: “change your ways” (2 Chronicles 7:14). Yes, ask the Lord to help you trust Him and to stretch you spiritually instead of being satisfied with your present comfort zone. Stay blessed in Jesus’ name.