“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20)
Many people today want to get as much as they can for themselves while giving as little in return as possible. They want to be there for their friends in the good times, but absent in the not-so-good ones. Sadly, national statistics confirm this lack of commitment. The marriage rate is down while the divorce rate is up. Involvement in ministry and worthy causes that help the needy are all down. Why? Because people don’t want to put themselves on the line, or be pinned down by responsibility.
We often view opportunities to serve others as obligations, therefore we avoid them. We’re a sound bite generation with a short attention span, accustomed to fifteen-second advertisements and fast food. We want our sermons short, simple, entertaining, and “feel-good”.
Yes, radical commitment is rare — but it’s what God requires of you. Commitment means your promise is binding whether it’s convenient or not. Let’s look at a few examples. Commitment to marriage. Marriage, as God sees it, isn’t a fifty-fifty arrangement. It’s a mutual agreement to give 100 percent of ourselves. It’s a lifetime covenant between you and your spouse: “for better or worse; for richer or poorer; in sickness and in health; until parted by death.” And that covenant is a lot easier to live up to when both partners have learned, like Paul, to say, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.” That means dying to self-interest is the key to great relationships.
Heavenly Father, help me to die to self and live for You in my relationship to You and others. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.