Blossoming redbud tree outside the church at the Old Cowtown Museum, Wichita, KS

Living all in

Commitment is one of the scariest words in the English language. Whether you’re committing to someone or something, it means you’re making a promise to see it through to the end. Commitment takes hard work and loyalty and lots and lots of grace, both received and extended, and whether it’s a person, a goal, or a cause, you won’t see the end of that promise overnight.

It isn’t just our culture that’s struggled with commitment issues. I think people all over the place have always fought to keep their promises, but keeping a promise is a lot harder than making one.

Blossoming redbud tree outside the church at the Old Cowtown Museum, Wichita, KS

Blossoming redbud tree outside the church at the Old Cowtown Museum, Wichita, KS

Today’s verse is 1 Kings 8:61.

And may you be completely faithful to the Lord our God. May you always obey his decrees and commands, just as you are doing today.

This is taken from a prayer that King Solomon prayed during the dedication of the Temple. Part of the prayer was to God, asking Him to remember them, and the rest of it was a statement to the Children of Israel to remember all that God had done for them. And wise King Solomon ended with this statement.

I was curious as to what that phrase completely faithful meant, so I checked the Amplified version. According to that version, it says: “blameless and wholly true.”

That’s a pretty tall order for any human being.

Personally, I don’t have a problem with making a commitment, and, even though I do struggle throughout, I don’t have a problem keeping a commitment. But there are levels of commitment.

You can make a promise to someone or you can promise to achieve something without putting your whole heart and soul into it. You can make a half-hearted commitment, and it’s safer that way. Because that way when people hurt you or when people let you down or when situations don’t work out the way you expect them to, you can protect yourself from disappointment.

That’s the category I usually end up in. But there’s nothing about that lifestyle that says “wholly true” is there? There’s nothing whole about that method of commitment at all. And maybe you protect yourself by only committing half of your heart but in the end, you only reap half the reward.

I really believe, as Christ-followers, God is calling us to be committed to His plans, whatever they are. He has a specific plan and intention for each of our lives. We may not know what those plans are yet. Some of us might, and if you do you’re fortunate. But whatever He’s asked us to do, wherever He’s asked us to serve, whoever He’s asked us to be, we need to commit to it with our whole heart.

It’s not easy. It actually may be the hardest thing you’ve ever done, and I can’t even promise that you’ll experience success along the way. But I can tell you that if you commit to doing what God has called you to do, He will bring you joy and peace, and you’ll never go without the things you need.

You just have to trust Him, and that’s what it comes down to. You have to trust Him enough to give up your plans in favor of His. You have to trust Him enough to let go of your strategies that will help you get ahead, and you may have to take a back seat somewhere. You may have to be taken down a notch in the corporate world. You may have to give up a high paying job. You may have to work a job that you think has nothing to do with your dreams.

But wherever He leads you, whatever He is asking you to do, do it. And don’t worry about whether or not it will work out. Just focus on doing the best you can where you are, committed to God’s plan with your whole heart.

Commitment isn’t impossible. It’s just a challenge. Whenever you make a commitment to anyone or anything, you’re going to face obstacles that make it difficult to keep your word. It could be financial difficulties. It could be emotional trouble. It could be relationship issues. It could be any number of things this broken world and our enemy can throw at us to get us sidetracked, but if you can endure, if you stay committed, it’s worth it.

We’re not called to live a half-life. We’re called to live all in. So stop hoarding your chips. Push them all to the center of the table and let God take over the game. I won’t say it’ll be easy, and I can’t promise that you won’t have trouble, but I can tell you that God’s holding all the cards anyway. So who would you rather bet on?