Commitment

Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment.”

Matthew 22:37-38 NIV

“Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”

Luke 9:23 NIV

What does it mean to make a commitment?  How much time does it take to honor a commitment?  What does it look like in your life?  Everyone has different answers on the how commitment works, yet the most important part about commitment is what is at the center of it.  Commitment takes dedicated time, communication and a willingness to make sacrifices.  Nobody ever said it would be easy, no matter what commitment you are thinking about as you read.  Jesus Christ made a commitment to reconcile us back to God and it cost Him His life on earth.   Take the time and the opportunity He has provided and make a commitment to follow Him and honor that commitment with how you live and your life.  Amen.

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“When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

John 8:12 NIV

(This photo was taken in June of 2015 while traveling in South Dakota)

His Way

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
    neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so are my ways higher than your ways
    and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

Isaiah 55:8-9 NIV

Stay focused, stay patient, stay committed.  Too often in life we get distracted by our surroundings or circumstances.  This is the work of darkness and evil…the less time we spend with God the less committed we will be to Him.  Some days will be more difficult than others…yet be persistent and don’t give up.  God loves you, He is with you, trust His Way.  Amen.

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Create in me a pure heart, O God,
    and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me from your presence
    or take your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation
    and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.”

Psalm 51:10-12 NIV

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 while traveling through the state of Washington)

Do Not Worry…Trust

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life[a]?

28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Matthew 6:25-34

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“Do not fret because of those who are evil
    or be envious of those who do wrong;
for like the grass they will soon wither,
    like green plants they will soon die away.

Trust in the Lord and do good;
    dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Take delight in the Lord,
    and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Commit your way to the Lord;
    trust in him and he will do this:
He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn,
    your vindication like the noonday sun.

Be still before the Lord
    and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways,
    when they carry out their wicked schemes.

Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
    do not fret—it leads only to evil.
For those who are evil will be destroyed,
    but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.”

Psalm 37:1-9

(This photo was taken in May of 2020 in Tettegouche State Park in northern Minnesota)

Stay Committed

Commit to the Lord whatever you do,
    and he will establish your plans.”

Proverbs 16:3

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Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”

Romans 12:1-2

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 near Arches National Park in Utah)

Plans…Purpose

Many are the plans in a person’s heart,
    but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”

Proverbs 19:21

Commit to the Lord whatever you do,
    and he will establish your plans.”

Proverbs 16:3

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“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Jeremiah 29:11

(This photo was taken in May of 2020 along the North Shore of Lake Superior)

Carry Your Cross

The bible does not say, if you follow Jesus, your life will be easy and worry free.  One of the most difficult elements of faith is commitment…no matter what is happening, no matter where we are, no matter how difficult life can become…we must remain committed to Jesus Christ and our faith.  The Good News is we don’t have to do any of this alone…

“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”

Deuteronomy 31:8

So do not fear, for I am with you;
    do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
    I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

Isaiah 41:10

Jesus Christ knows what it is like to suffer in this world…He has carried His Cross and because He did, we are saved.  We cannot choose the things that will happen to us…yet we are 100% responsible for how we choose to respond.  Follow the example of Jesus our Savior…carry your cross.  Amen.

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“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”

Galatians 2:20

(This photo was taken in August of 2016 near Arches National Park in Utah)

Commitment

Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment.”

Matthew 22:37-38

“Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”

Luke 9:23

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“When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

John 8:12

(This photo was taken in June of 2015 while traveling in South Dakota)

Trust…Commit

Trust in the Lord and do good;
    dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Take delight in the Lord,
    and he will give you the desires of your heart.”

Psalms 37:3-4

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Commit to the Lord whatever you do,
    and he will establish your plans.”

Proverbs 16:3

(This photo was taken in April of 2020 at a lake near Plymouth, Minnesota)

With All Your Heart

The Lord asks for all of you…not just Sunday morning you or Wednesday evening you and not just some quick memorized words at meal time or just before bed…He wants more than that from each of us.  He wants a relationship with you…He wants communication with you every day.  He wants to hear from you with all your heart and He wants you to listen to Him.  Commit your way to the Lord and you will find peace.  Amen.

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 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts.”

Deuteronomy 6:5-6

(This photo was taken in October of 2014 while exploring the island of Maui, Hawaii)

Worship Every Day

Anything worth doing takes commitment.  The athlete does not become the best at their sport “overnight.”  It takes dedication and focus…hours and hours of practice, discipline.  The more time we spend on something the more we grow in it.  It also means we must sacrifice time doing other things.  This is true for all aspects of our lives.  It is the same with our faith and our relationship with Jesus Christ.  Where we choose to spend our time has a direct impact on who we are and who we can become.  Choose your faith journey, choose God’s Word, choose prayer and worship every day.  Amen.

You Are Holy (Prince Of Peace) by Michael W Smith

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“Better is one day in your courts
    than a thousand elsewhere;
I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God
    than dwell in the tents of the wicked.
11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
    the Lord bestows favor and honor;
no good thing does he withhold
    from those whose walk is blameless.

12 Lord Almighty,
    blessed is the one who trusts in you.”

Psalm 84:10-12

(This photo was taken in May of 2020 in Superior National Forest in northern Minnesota)