Wednesday, July 14, 2010
You shall be careful to do what has passed your lips, for you have voluntarily vowed to the LORD your God what you have promised with your mouth.
A promise made to God is not a light issue. It is not good to be incautious in promising something to God. He expects us to fulfill our vows. The childhood Sunday School song has double impact: "Oh be careful little lips what you say." Good promises can be as important to understand... even more so than why we avoid using bad language. In fact, insincere promises may be more damaging... at least in terms of our relationship with God.
Part of the reason that I pray with people when we counsel together and reach biblical understandings of what they should do has to do with this principle of honoring our vows. They should keep their promise to God, not just to me or to another person. It is in that promise that true and vital accountability takes place. God will make sure by circumstance or conviction of His Spirit that the promise is understood and kept by His child. God is faithful, and He expects the same in us in what we say to Him.
Promises are certainly cheap these days. But they should not be so. We should carefully commit to what we promise to do for several reasons. I'd like to suggest that these three are a good place to start thinking of the impact of our promises:
1) If the promise is a commitment before God, it should be held as a deep conviction, not just a casual wish or desire.
2) God's character ultimately is reflected in the way I keep a promise if I am His child. I should always consider this when I have made a promise to Him, before Him, or because of His work in my heart.
3) Our relationship with God is tested and challenged to maturity by the commitments we make to God. Making such promises and commitments (promises if you will) are then a living path of real sanctification.
- Posted with my iPad. The Apple Kool-Aide tastes fine.