Are You Committed?
Are You Committed?
I imagine that many of you made a new year’s resolution at the beginning of the year. Maybe you decided to read through the Bible in one year? Maybe you wanted to develop a more meaningful prayer life? Maybe you wanted to look for more opportunities to evangelize? How committed have you been to those resolutions? Commitment is sticking with something. It is following through with what you have started. God doesn’t want half-hearted service from His children He wants our total commitment! As we think about this important concept, I want us to consider three areas that require our commitment and devotion as Christians.
Be Committed to Spiritual Growth
It can be discouraging when we do not see the results of our hard work immediately. We know this to be true with exercise and dieting. The same can be said for spiritual growth. However, it's easy to forget that spiritual growth is a process that takes time and commitment.
As we add qualities such as moral excellence, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love to our faith. Peter reminds us that if we want to grow in these areas, it requires diligence! “Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence…” (2 Peter 1:5). The word diligence means to “do your best.” There will be times where you feel like giving up because you don’t see results right away. Don’t allow your adversary deceive you into giving up when discouragement comes, but with diligence, “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Pet. 3:18).
Be Committed to Fellow Christians
“Be devoted to one another in brotherly love; give preference to one another in honor” (Rom. 12:10). There is something remarkable and comforting about being a part of the family of God. I can recall times when I didn’t know where to turn, times when I needed someone and a brother or sister was there to help bear my burdens. What a blessing to have a family who rejoices with us through the good times and weeps with us through the difficult times (Rom. 12:15).
One roadblock that keeps us from being committed to one another is our pride. When we only look out for ourselves our vision becomes distorted. We are not aware of our brothers and sisters who may be grieving over the loss of a loved one, those who may be struggling spiritually, or those who may just need someone to talk to. Rather than thinking of only ourselves, our mindset should be to “do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” (Phil. 2:3). The Christian life has never been one about what others can do for me but about what I can do to help others and that requires commitment.
Be Committed to God
If someone were to record your actions for a week, what would your commitment to God look like? Our commitment to God goes beyond the times when we assemble for worship. Our commitment to God is seen in how we live when we are behind closed doors. When no one is looking, and no one is around. Our commitment to God is seen when our back is against the wall and sin is crouching at the door. How committed are you to God?
One theme from the Book of Daniel that has challenged me is how Daniel and his friends were consistent in their commitment to God. Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king’s choice food or the wine he drank (1:8). Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were told that if they did not bow to Nebuchadnezzar’s golden image, they would be cast into the fiery furnace and yet they remained faithful to God (3:16-18). Daniel was told he could not pray to God any longer, but that did not keep him from praying (6:10). Throughout every step of the way their commitment to God was challenged, and they never wavered. They never compromised their faith and commitment to God.
The supreme example of what commitment looks like is demonstrated in Jesus. His mission from the foundation of the world was to give His life as a ransom for many (Matt. 20:28). Jesus fulfilled His mission despite the difficulties and overwhelming temptations He experienced and was “obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:8). Jesus has left a pattern for us to follow as we deny ourselves and take up our crosses daily (Mk. 8:34).
As you go about the rest of your week, I want to challenge you to be committed to spiritual growth, to your fellow Christians, and to God than you were this week. The mantra that should ring out in our lives is to “excel still more.” I know that these are areas you are already committed to but let’s abound in them more and more as we walk this path of discipleship.