One of those lessons has to do with the importance of making and keeping commitments. I have always been a proponent for just trying. As long as you were in the mindset of trying, I could work with that. I would expect a certain amount of effort and if you messed up, I would expect you to just get back up and try again. But then the Lord had me look into my "just try" philosophy.
The challenge: is just trying enough?
After much encouragement, one of my most challenging students decided to give cooperation a second chance. He said that he would give it a try. The time came for him to try and he did, however he messed up and gave up. We talked about it the situation and he decided to try again. The same results as before occurred: he messed up and gave up on trying. It just didn't seem to work. Just trying did not seem to be enough. I found myself doubting his willingness. Good thing God stepping in to clarify.
It was not my place to judge the willingness of the child, instead I needed to raise the bar. There had to be a way to encourage trying no matter how many times you fall down. Dun, dun, dun.... COMMITMENT TIME! The Lord spoke loud and clear and it made sense.
If I say that I will try to do better, once I give it a try I kept my word. I can choose to try again but at the end of the day, I have already tried. Then there is the commitment. If I say I will commit to doing better and I mess up, then I try again. Why? Because I am in it for the long hall. I will not STOP trying till I am actually doing better.
Now it MADE SENSE!
Commitments are not foreign concepts to us. The most commonly heard of commitment is marriage. If the couple gets into a fight, they do not part ways and get a divorce; they will stick it out through thick and thin--ups and downs.
I have committed to a relationship with my Lord and Savior and He has made a commitment to me. The beauty is that He has promised to "never leave you, nor forsake you." His desire to be with me has been around longer than I will ever understand. Jesus is the one we should look to on how to stay dedicated with others and himself. When we see how he dealt with David, you see how he never let go. He was kind, patient, gentle, faithful and brought joy to David's life. But it did not end there. God also was stern and kept him accountable. With all that He brings to the relationship, there is any wonder how we could misunderstand his intentions. He stays close by and His love never fails.
So, if I desire to teach my students to stay committed to changing and healing, I have to understand what it means to keep a commitment. As I study the Lord's tracks and have my own experiences, I will gain further understanding, but for now I have learned a lot. I see that you must start by saying that you are going to do more than try, you will make a commitment. Then try again. How? By first increasing your commitment to God. By being kind as God is kind. By being patient as God is patient. By being gentle as God is gentle. By being faithful as God is faithful. By keeping others accountable and God keeps us accountable. Ultimately showing love as God is love. When your relationship with God is deep, your strength to run life's race and never drop out will never wane. Then, use the strength given from God to keep pushing forward. Just keep swimming.
So commitment is more than a simple concept or desire, it is a principle we must all live by. So I urge you to do more than just say you will try, say you WILL COMMIT.