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Real People; Real Promises

In a popular western movie, John Wayne and Katherine Hepburn were in a tight spot.  Bad guys with guns blazing made the outcome doubtful. While Wayne valiantly held off the attack, Hepburn calmly said something like, “The Lord will rescue us.” 

“If He does, I’ll give up drinking,” Wayne replied. 

When the pressure is on or we’re out of options, how often do we fire off similar offers to God? “God, if You do _______, I’ll change.” We get this idea that God is backed in a corner ready to deal, like we’re negotiating a price at a yard sale. For some of us, this might be the only times we ever talk to God.

God cares more about our actions than our words. God is angered by shallow promises. Ecclesiastes 5:4 says “He has no pleasure” in such things and Proverbs 20:25 says frivolously making commitments to God is “a trap.” 

After lamenting about all the meaningless things we chase in our lives, Solomon, the writer of Ecclesiastes, shows us what is truly meaningful to God -- genuine integrity in our relationship with Him. God wants us to be real with Him. Ecclesiastes 5:5 says, “It is better not to vow than to make a vow and not fulfill it” (NIV84). If our commitment is not real, He does not want our commitment.   

Reflect:

God desires real commitments from real people.  What can you change, starting right now, to be more

  • real and honest with yourself and with God?
  • thoughtful and disciplined in your commitments?
  • intentional about living up to what you promise?

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