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Wednesday, September 9, 2009

You Are Only Committed to What You Truly Believe

Several years ago I went to Mongolia on a mission trip. I was sent to a remote village about seventy miles from the nations capital. Many of the villagers had placed a personal pile of rocks on the surrounding hills. Each morning they would make the journey up the hills to walk around their pile of rocks three times. They believed this would give them a good day. I supposed they believed the opposite would happen if they didn't walk around their rocks. They were committed to the act each day.

Many Christians who say they are committed to Christ do not prove this with their actions. Their actions show their commitment. Their commitment reveals what they truly believe. For example, many Christians prove that they believe participating in sports will be more effective in developing their children than church. They will keep their children on teams that must be gone many Sundays of the year. They tell me that they will be back in church as soon as the "season" is over. 

Of course, this also reveals what the parents believe about their own marriages. They believe that the activity with their children will keep their marriage alive. It may keep them focused for a while but it will not keep their marriages together. I have ample proof of that.

Many Christians have a cursory belief in a Lord who will supply all their needs. They say the right words but their unwillingness to give as God has prospered them is evidence that they don't believe it. They are like the Israelites who tried to pick up more manna than they could use in one day. They didn't know that the God who led them through the sea would not abandon them in the wilderness. They thought they had better take care of themselves in case God didn't provide. Isn't that what Christians who fail to give as they should are doing?

Commitment is necessary for any action that has an undetermined future. It takes commitment to get married because there are some days ahead that may not be so pleasing. There are the days that the spouse is sick or just acts like a jerk. Those are the days that the commitment becomes evident. You stay because you are committed. The love that most claim as the basis for their marriage is more emotion that commitment. That love can come and go. The love that comes from commitment will stay when the emotions want to run. 

Some days you have to draw a line in the sand for yourself. You will never be able to finish school if you don't believe in the benefits it will provide. You will never go on a diet if you don't believe you can lose the weight. It takes belief to be committed and most worthy things in life take commitment.

Look at your commitments. What do you believe?

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