Sunday, May 2, 2010

Commitment – 7 Important Ones

Com-mit-ment

1 a: an act of committing to a charge or trust: as (1): a consignment to a penal or mental institution (2): an act of referring a matter to a legislative committee b: MITTIMUS[1] 2 a: an agreement or pledge to do something in the future; especially : an engagement to assume a financial obligation at a future date b: something pledged c: the state or an instance of being obligated or emotionally impelled commitment to a cause[2]

In life there can be no more pressing a goal than to be committed; to life, to values, to change, to repentance, to a person, to our friends and neighbours, and finally, to God. Of course, there are more to consider.

1. Commitment to Life

God and our parents provided us life; we honour them by choosing to live and by virtue of living well, we indeed honour ourselves as well as God and our parents.

2. Commitment to Values

Everyone has values, just as everyone worships something. We have a choice on values and which ones we’re committed to. We need to make a deliberate decision regarding values. This is a most important exercise. For the sake of illustration, mine are diligence, prudence, shalom, balance, trust, respect, and finally, wisdom.

Values define who we are and what we’re striving for. They are the virtues we choose to become.

3. Commitment to Repentance

With the right values we’ll not be able to resist repentance; our values will cause us to vomit up any behaviour that’s incongruent with them. We’ll experience a great deal of cognitive dissonance, leading to heartache, and a status of forlorn deadness; a state that can’t continue for long.

Repentance is a recognition of wrong, and a commitment to turning away from wrong i.e. to ardently ‘turning back’ to the correct way immediately. Repentance is the return to joy of spirit and peace.

4. Commitment to Change

Like the above, during life, we have various junctures with which we must choose. These forks in the road are opportunities. We only get so many of these opportunities before the door is slammed shut. It only seems that the opportunities are endless.

Proverbs 29:1 (Msg) says, “For people who hate discipline and only get more stubborn, there’ll come a day when life tumbles in and they break, but by then it’ll be too late to help them.”

We must change while we have the chance. Ongoing change in the right direction—to the sweeping tides of life—is one the healthiest commitments any person can make.

5. Commitment to a Person

Most of us get the opportunity to marry. When we do we must be committed to this person, and not simply regarding sexual fidelity alone. We properly commit to our marriage partner when we are devoted to them like we’re devoted to no other (including ourselves), save God.

6. Commitment to Friends and Neighbours

Most people will be vaguely familiar with Jesus’ Parable of the Good Samaritan.[3] In this light, the good neighbour was the ‘one who had mercy’ on the person who was mugged, and didn’t simply pass by, ignoring the kafuffle, rendering no assistance. The good neighbour does something. Commitment to ‘loving our neighbour’ is intrinsically held with commitment to God. It is non-negotiable.

7. Commitment to God

Our most fervent commitment must be to God. Even though this is mentioned last, he, in fact, needs to come first. When he comes first, ironically we do.

But, Wait. There’s more... a whole lot more

There are a myriad of other commitments we should make during the course of our lives including a commitment to our employers. This above is simply illustrative of a godly life in the hands of its possessor.

© 2009, 2010 S. J. Wickham.

ENDNOTES:
[1] Mittimus means a warrant of commitment to prison.
[2] Source: Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary.
[3] See Luke 10:25-37.

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