Character Study: Commitment
I believe life is constantly testing us for our level of commitment, and life's greatest rewards are reserved for those who demonstrate a never-ending commitment to act until they achieve. This level of resolve can move mountains, but it must be constant and consistent. As simplistic as this may sound, it is still the common denominator separating those who live their dreams from those who live in regret.
When I read this quotation, I couldn't help but think of my recent blog post titled "Resolve." Many of the sentiments I expressed are echoed here.
Since commitment and resolve are akin to each other, I consider my current testings. Raising a quality, well-behaved puppy requires constancy and consistency even at three o'clock in the morning. Home educating three boys seems monumental at times. Keeping a daily log of my writing and household tasks can appear to take away from my precious time.
Yet, then I get a few more minutes of sleep. What seems like a steep incline into the educational unknown results in one child graduating, another soon to follow, and a third at the beginning of high school. I see checks along the edge of my list.
Before each testing, however, came a trial period. A puppy's first year is generally the training period when personality quirks are identified, and behavior modifications made. When we started our home education journey, we committed to one year. We will soon celebrate a decade of this endeavor. Every new year sparks a generating of goals with trial and error until the right combination is attained. The original intent may have been adjusted several times, yet the end result can still be obtained.
So, as I pondered this quotation and these ideas, I thought back to my Bible reading for the day in the book of Hosea. Suddenly, my to-do list paled in comparison.
Marry a prostitute.
Name your children in ways that reflect rejection.
Be continually faithful when the people in your life are not.
Something else occurs to me. Hosea didn't have a trial period.
When the Lord first began speaking to Israel through Hosea, he said to him, “Go and marry a prostitute,so that some of her children will be conceived in prostitution. This will illustrate how Israel has acted like a prostitute by turning against the Lord and worshiping other gods.”
Hosea didn't put his marriage on a trial basis. The stipulations weren't something he said he would do when he met Gomer. He made the commitment to marry a prostitute before he met her.
He did it because he had a prior commitment.
He was first and foremost committed to God. It was that commitment--not the one he had made to Gomer--that gave Hosea the stamina to sustain through the testing of having a wayward wife. He knew his actions were visible proof of God's commitment to God's chosen people.
It is the signature under the resolution. It binds the covenant.
Commitment says, "I can" and "I will."
Commitment says, "I do."
What are your commitments? Are they based on a prior commitment? Is a recommitment after a time of testing something to add at the top of your to-do list? Then do more than resolve by saying, "I will try." Commit by saying, "I will."