We make commitments every day that we do not keep. The reasons can be many, but sometimes it is out of an idealistic mindset or naiveté. We think it would be “good” or “right” for us to commit to something, but we do not prayerfully consider whether the Lord would actually want us to do it. We rely on our faulty human thinking and ideas to decide what it is we should be doing instead of seeking Him.
There are many “good” things that are perhaps not God’s “best” for us, and we must cling to Him tightly and pray to Him earnestly, asking for wisdom and discernment to know the difference. I struggle with this a lot. I enjoy serving and helping, and if I see a need, I often automatically think God must want to use me to meet that need! Sometimes He does, but other times I have to humbly surrender the desire or urge to jump in, trusting that He can provide another way. I have found that there are times I have to say “no” so that I can truly say “yes” and faithfully complete the things I have committed to. Jesus clearly instructs us in Matthew 5:37, “But let your statement be, ‘Yes, yes’ or ‘No, no'; anything beyond these is of evil” (NASB).
Another reason we fail to keep our commitments is out of impure motives. We don’t want to disappoint or hurt someone's feelings, all out of a desire to please man. I know I have been guilty many times of telling someone I would do something, just because I didn’t want to say “no” and hurt their feelings, when in the back of my mind I was pretty sure I could not complete what I was committing to.
Paul tells us in Galatians 1:10, “For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.” Ouch! If we are saying “yes” to things, even good things, out of a desire to please or impress man, we are not serving Christ, but ourselves. That’s a problem if our desire is to bring glory and honor to the Lord through our actions. We were reminded in the lecture that when we are making a commitment, we are making it to the Lord, not to man. Even the littlest offering of, “Sure, I will do that.”
I have found that in order to keep the commitments I have made to the Lord, I have to re-prioritize. As believers, we want to live out Romans 12:1, offering our bodies as living sacrifices. Let’s be honest girls: a sacrifice costs us something. That might mean less sleep, less time on the computer or social media, even less time socializing or spending time with friends (this one is hard for me). Why would we want to do that?
Again, Paul helps us at the beginning of Romans 12:1, “In view of God’s mercy” (NIV). We love, sacrifice, and press on because He first loved us! He loves you and deeply desires for you to come to Him and obey Him. Not out of obligation or even to ‘please’ Him, but out of love for Him.
May we not be women of the world in regard to our words, but may we be women of honor, integrity, and virtue who keep our words by God’s grace alone!
By Angie Thomas