1My child, if you have put up security for a friend’s debt
or agreed to guarantee the debt of a stranger—
2 if you have trapped yourself by your agreement
and are caught by what you said—
3 follow my advice and save yourself,
for you have placed yourself at your friend’s mercy.
Now swallow your pride;
go and beg to have your name erased.
4 Don’t put it off; do it now!
Don’t rest until you do.
5 Save yourself like a gazelle escaping from a hunter,
like a bird fleeing from a net.
6 Take a lesson from the ants, you lazybones.
Learn from their ways and become wise!
7 Though they have no prince
or governor or ruler to make them work,
8 they labor hard all summer,
gathering food for the winter.
9 But you, lazybones, how long will you sleep?
When will you wake up?
10 A little extra sleep, a little more slumber,
a little folding of the hands to rest—
11 then poverty will pounce on you like a bandit;
scarcity will attack you like an armed robber.
Mark Twain once said that if the first thing you do each morning is to eat a live frog, you can go through the day with the satisfaction of knowing that is probably the worst thing that is going to happen to you all day long. (From Brian Tracy’s Eat That Frog!)
If you’re like me, usually the hardest thing on my ‘to do’ list is having a difficult conversation. Whether it’s having a relationship restored due to a wrong done, or having to speak the truth in love to someone in a tense environment, or having to admit I was wrong about something, etc. Hard conversations are, well, hard.
Wisdom says the earlier you deal with it, the better. If you read the first 11 verses of Proverbs 6 close enough you will see the author pleading with his son to ‘Eat the Frog’ and eat it FAST. In other words, don’t put off the hard conversation. Do it now. In fact, be so diligent about it that you are ‘ant-like.’
Gotta a hard conversation that needs to happen?
Wisdom says: (1) Swallow your pride and do it now (vs. 3b-4); (2) Be like a proactive ant (vs. 6-8); and (3) Know putting it off only makes it worse and delays the inevitable (vs. 9-11).
What do you need to do NOW that you have been putting off? Hard conversation? Tense interaction? Awkward confrontation? Go ahead and do it. You’ll be set free from the ‘trapped’ feeling plaguing you (see verse 5).
Identify your frog. Eat it. Enjoy the rest of your day.