“Too many Christians have a commitment of convenience. They’ll stay faithful as long as it’s safe and doesn’t involve risk, rejection, or criticism. Instead of standing alone in the face of challenge or temptation, they check to see which way their friends are going.”― Charles Stanley, American Clergy
Commitment is an act, not a word.– Jean Paul Sartre The word COMMITMENT means the state or quality of being dedicated to a a cause, activity, etc., a pledge or undertaking; an engagement or obligation that restricts freedom of action. The verb commit in this sense means to pledge or bind a person or an organization to a certain course or policy; to pledge or set aside resources for future use; to be dedicated to something or someone, to be in a long-term emotional relationship with someone. The last definition is the one we generally use when we talk about commitment.
Have you heard of commitment phobia? There are people who are afraid to commit to anyone or anything—even to the promises they’ve made to God, or to themselves. Dr. Ilisa Kaufman writes that commitment phobics are sometimes unable to make decisions and are paralyzed by the fear that they could make the wrong decision and mess up their life and the lives of others. These folks can also suffer from FOMO, the fear of missing out. They don’t want to commit to a job, career, or love interest for fear that someone or something better may be around the corner. Some fear to commit themselves fully to God for various often unspoken reasons.
King David in Psalm 37 wrote about the struggle of fully committing and trusting one’s life to the Lord when the wicked seem to be prospering. “Do not fret because of evildoers, Nor be envious of the workers of iniquity. 2 For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, And wither as the green herb. 3 Trust in the Lord, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.4 Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart. 5 Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, And He shall bring it to pass..” Dr. Kaufman asks, What happens when we’re unable to commit? Some people’s fears of commitment can stop them from making plans or promises at all — even small commitments, such as meeting up with friends. Such commitment fears do not extend only to choices that could impact the rest of one’s life, but to those that will impact just one evening. Have you been having trouble committing lately?