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Saturday, October 8, 2016

Saturday Sermonette - How to be a Grownup, Lesson 16

When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 1 Corinthians 13:1, NKJV

Keeping Your Promises

Keeping promises can be as as easy as taking the kids to the beach or a movie or the zoo or as complex and difficult as keeping all your marriage vows.

One of the marriage vows we made was to keep each other warm on cold winter nights. Except for one time I kept that vow, and now it haunts me. Last November, I came home from a craft fair where I'd been selling and signing my books. Freezing cold, I put my foot warmer on the bed, brushed my teeth, and came to bed. I had just begun to feel my toes when I heard Jack murmur from the other side of our queen bed, "Warm me." More of an invitation or a plea than a command. He was cold. Did I immediately move over to his side and share the warmth I had? No, I did not. I reached my hand across the sheet and held his hand. A poor and inadequate substitute.

I broke my vow.

I wish I had a dollar for every time I yearned for that moment again, that I could give him the warmth he wanted. I was selfish. I would have been chilly for a minute or maybe two, but I didn't want to move from my warmed spot. The next month marked when he became sick and never recovered.

Promises are made at a time when we fully intend to carry them out. I've never made a promise I didn't intend to fulfill. Have you? No, I didn't think so. But--have you ever broken a promise? Yes, I suspected I wasn't the only one.

Sometimes keeping a promise becomes impossible--illness, hurricanes, or other circumstances prevent it. However, I have to admit most of my broken promises are more because of laziness or stubbornness or out-and-out failure.

I suggest we pray about and think about a promise before we speak the words, even minor ones. Can we agree on that? I think we can, with God's help.

Lord, we come to You again seeking Your help. You said in the Bible to let our yeses be yeses and our nos be nos, but we really need Your guidance and wisdom and the ability to carry out what we say we will do. Forgive me for my past failures to keep my word, and help me to do better. For Jesus's sake and for His glory, Amen.
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