What If You Commit

Seth Barnes posted a great blog today on the need for commitment despite an unknowable future. Here is an excerpt:

Too many people want to keep their options open and miss the opportunity that commitment affords. If I could give my children’s generation a gift, I’d get them out of their coffee shops and parents’ basements and I’d give them the gift of commitment. You’ll never find your future until you launch – you find it as you commit.  (for the rest of the blog, click here)

This summer I intensely waffled for weeks over a decision to step into full time missions abroad even though it has been part of my daily prayers for much longer. I knew God’s answer long before I gave mine. It required a level of commitment that frightened me. What if I fail? What if I can’t handle it? What if I can’t raise the support? What if…

Zambian wedding

For two years I read blogs and pondered pursuing the World Race and then held onto my application for another couple of months. What if I couldn’t raise the support? What if I was in a situation where I needed to swim (I was convinced I needed swimming lessons just in case)?  What if …

For a decade or more I have considered what it would be like to design a line of greeting cards, write a book, and, in general, have a creative business that would not only generate income but be used to touch lives around the world. What if the world critiques your creativity? What if it’s not good enough? What if…

I am part of the generation Seth speaks about, the ones that do not like to commit. It seems so boxed in, confining, FINAL. What if you commit to something and then a better opportunity comes along? What if it doesn’t?

Commitment brings responsibility and the potential for failure and letting others down. All things I avoid like the plague. But why?

I think I hold onto this wrong idea that I have to know, without question or doubt, what I want to do, where I want to go and the 10 easy steps to accomplish it. I want all the answers. I want the rewards without the risk. I want instant gratification. Commitment gives you none of that.

In a culture of sound bytes, fast food and one night stands I think waiting, hard work and commitment is cheapened. We are always looking for the easy, speedy, guaranteed solution, which works for, say, deciding what washing machine to purchase, but is a completely errant decision making process for life.

I have committed to helping university students in Ukraine. I am terrified of the winter ahead, unsure of how support will come through and completely removed from my comfort zone. For some reason I think that is just what God intends. One thing I can say for certain is that there was more freedom, joy and peace AFTER I committed.

However, I’m still working on committing to greeting cards and novels.

Why do you think it is so hard to commit? Is there something you need to stop wavering on and commit to?

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