<<promise, pledge>>

Through trying situations, our commitment is tested and will be strengthened if we remain loyal and respond appropriately, without compromise or yielding to the temptation of giving up (Deut 8:2; Gal 6:9; Heb 10:35,36). Commitment is the ability to continue ‘doing’ when the world around seems to be crumbling. It is remaining true to the calling of God on your life, the heavenly vision He has planted within, when others give up because of discouragement and start to speak negatively because they are disillusioned and may try to divert you too.  Be convinced in your own mind, renewing and reinforcing your allegiance as you refocus on Him.

The way we live shows our commitment in the various areas of life.  Commitment starts with a choice we make, and continues into faithful, long-term loyalty. Following this initial mental ‘buy in’, there must be  determined, ongoing, responsible action, ‘paying the price’ when the going gets tough and others maybe quitting, not opting for an easy way out that requires less dedication. Are we committed to God and His Kingdom or to the passing pleasures of life?  Jesus illustrated commitment by stating, “I am…” and then becoming, “…the good shepherd who lays down His life for the sheep” (Jn 10:11).

Solomon said “Your hearts must be fully committed to the Lord our God, to live by His decrees and obey His commands” (1 Kgs 8:61). This is not a partial, ‘when it suits us’ or ‘is to our advantage loyalty’, rather it often calls for sacrifice and going against the crowd. Following the call of God can be costly, as life’s rights are relinquished, however Jesus said those who have left all for the Kingdom of God will be richly rewarded (Mk 10:28-30). Be faithful to what will bring about His will for you, knowing nothing of real value is ever achieved without determined commitment. When the going gets hard don’t quit by giving up in defeat, instead conquer by drawing on the grace of God. God is committed to those who are committed to Him (1 Sam 2:30; 2 Chr 15:2).  So put yourself in God’s hands – there is no more secure place than that. “Commit to God your way and work, then it will succeed” (Ps 37:5; Prov 16:3).

Nothing should be placed above a total commitment of living for Christ (Ex 20:3; Mk 12:30). It involves taking up our cross (shouldering that by which the world’s power over us will be broken) denying our wants, following Him on a daily basis and not turning back (Lk 9:23-62). Our loyalty will be challenged in whatever we are committed

  Be fully committed to the Lord,                        loving Him above all else 

to – through circumstances, interpersonal conflict, health, time, family and financial pressures. God will honour His Word and He is fully committed to guarding that which we have yielded to Him (Ps 89:34; 2 Tim 1:2).

We should fulfill our promises to God (Job 22:27; Ps 57:2, 65:1, 66:13,14; Jnh 2:9; Mt 5:33). It is wrong not to honour a vow or promise – either fulfill it or ask to be released from it (Num 30:2; Deut 23:21; Prov 6:1-5; Eccl 5:4,5). Honourably keep your word even when it will prove hurtful or costly so it is unwise to make hasty decisions as we may regret them (Ps 15:4; Prov 20:25).

Commitment to Jesus involves loyalty to His body – the church and submission to the leaders.

Encourage others by noticing and complimenting them on their commitment and stickability, especially those in behind-the-scene roles. Although they are “Doing it as unto the Lord” they still should be acknowledged for their contribution (Col 3:23).

David made a commitment to have a continual attitude of praise (Ps 34:1, 71:6). Paul had the same approach to life: “Rejoice in the Lord always…In everything give thanks” (Phil 4:4; 1 Thes 5:18).

Peace in our hearts comes by fully committing ourselves to God. Entrust your life, family, job, ministry, future and belongings to the Lord for His control and guidance, as He knows what is best for us even if it takes a while to happen (Ps 37:7). Regularly review and take steps to strengthen those vital areas of your life.

Commitment involves submission to another, not acting independently or in rebellion but rather in a mutually beneficial arrangement. Without ongoing commitment, it is impossible to have a strong relationship with another. Marriage is designed by God to be a life-long commitment, broken only by the death of one partner and not to be dissolved by divorce because of conflict or thinking the ‘grass is greener’ elsewhere. The outworking of being committed to God includes being devoted to your spouse and making your marriage a success in spite of their particular idiosyncrasies! Do I need to renew my vows of commitment ‘to love and cherish for better or worse, for richer or poorer…’ Have others hold you accountable to your obligation to your marriage, your family and relationship to God.

God’s promise is that He “will strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him” (2 Chr 16:9). We should regularly pray for Christians who are suffering intense persecution because of their faith to remain loyal to Christ. The Bible indicates some are delivered from these trials while others die for their faith (Heb 11:35-38). It is difficult to make it successfully through life without the input of others so, wisely and responsibly, without meddling, become your brother’s keeper being interested in the happenings in their lives (Gen 4:9,10; Phil 2:4).  

It is common in any avenue of life for the original enthusiasm to wane and commitment to reduce over time. Recommitting is a returning to that initial passion and keenness, a renewal of heart focus.

See also: accountability, brother’s keeper, cross, decisions, devotion, divorce, faithfulness, loyalty, persevere, pledge, submission.

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