The lost art of commitment

“‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

Matthew 22:37-40

In 1772, John Fawcett, the young pastor of a poor church in Hebden Bridge, England, was called to a large and influential church in London. But as the wagons were being loaded with the Fawcetts’ few belongings, the people from their congregation came for a tearful farewell.

During the good-byes, Mary Fawcett cried, “John, I can’t bear to leave!”

“Nor can I,” he replied. “We shall remain here with our people.” The wagons were unloaded, and John Fawcett spent his entire 53-year ministry in Hebden Bridge.

Sadly, this kind of commitment is almost unheard of in this day and age. That’s because many people are simply looking for the next great thing rather than doing the hard work of staying committed when times get tough. This can be seen in high job turnover rates, short attention spans, and the skyrocketing divorce rates of recent years.

But the truth is that commitment to the right things brings contentment. Someone with lifelong friends will be much happier than the social butterfly who has superficial relationships. And staying devoted to serving Christ in your life will keep you more stable than following the changing philosophical winds of the world.

So commit yourself to God and to people. Not only will you remain stable in life, but you’ll experience deeper joy and happiness as you weather the shifting winds of the world.

Prayer Challenge

Ask God to help you find the right things to commit yourself to and remain committed when the winds of the world try to shift your focus.

Questions for Thought

What are some things you’ve remained committed to throughout your life? What have been the benefits of those commitments?

How can you stay committed to the important things like people and your faith when the world tells you to give up?