Thursday, July 19, 2007

Embracing Commitments

Last Sunday, we started a weekly fellowship and Bible study with a few brethren and friends in a high-rise residential condo. God has a unique way of cheering us up when others leave! That’s how He meant the Body of Christ to be. Everyone needs one while we pick our way through the minefields of life’s journey.

Ed, the host, used to be someone I’d not seen for quite some time. He just appeared at my side when I least expected him. That’s only about 3 or 4 months ago while I was walking in the Ortigas Center area at the height of a personal crisis. According to him, way prior to that chance meeting, he’d write my name in his personal diary and remember me in prayers. Somewhat “strange” to me! Before I knew it, we’re going on coffee talks together.

During the bible study and dinner together that Sunday, I heard a side comment looking back on some sad church experiences. Commitments and relationships were not kept. And because of that, one has become “commitment shy.” Things that happened in the past have somehow affected one’s efforts to make new commitments in the future.

“I’m not committing again!” I wonder how many times I can hear that “silently” from bruised men and women (and even from me!). It is easy to build an altar around hurts or disappointments experienced in the past. But God does not want us to spend the rest of our lives worshipping in this altar. He wants us to grow by learning from the past. And then, move on.

Could I be hurt again if I embrace new commitments? Of course. We will still fail at times. People may hurt us again. It’s simply the reality of living on this planet. But not every one else is your ex-friend, or your ex-church, or your ex-spouse who hurt you. The only way we can grow is to learn from our “ex-periences” and be responsive and responsible again to make new commitments to live.

God is with us when we embrace new commitments. “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with my eye” (Psalms 32:8). Ask for His instructions and guidance before you start the journey again.

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