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November 3, 2022

Keeping the Promises, We Make to Ourselves

One of the highest compliments men give to other men is, “He’s a man of his word.”  It means a man is trustworthy; he keeps a promise and does what he says he’ll do.   I want that to be said about me and I’m sure you want it, as well.

But I want to take it one step further.  Are you a man of your word when it comes to keeping promises to yourself? 

I’ve heard this used as a definition of integrity, and I think it’s right on.

In Matthew 5:37, Jesus put it this way, “Let your ‘yes’ be ‘yes’ and your ‘no’ be ‘no.’”  No need to swear to God or anything else to back up your sincerity to keep your promise.  You just do it.

This fits into my “alarm clock is boss” philosophy of life.  Most mornings I get up at 4:45am to either workout or attend the Thursday morning Bible study.  I set the alarm on my phone every night before I go to bed and remind myself that I will get up at 4:45am no matter what.  It doesn’t matter if I go to bed late.  It doesn’t matter if I get a poor night’s sleep.  It doesn’t matter if it’s cold, dark and raining.  When the alarm goes off, I get up.  I don’t debate with myself.  I used to, and in that semi-conscious state, I could always find a reason to go back to sleep, only to wake up an hour later with regret that I didn’t get up.  Injury or illness are pretty much the only reasons I won’t get up at 4:45am.

I take this approach to my daily calendar, too.  If I write it down, I’m going to do it.

This takes discipline, and I’m a better man for it.  I’m thankful that the Holy Spirit, living inside us, is not a Spirit of fear or timidity, but of power, love and self-discipline (2 Timothy 1:7).

Motivation will fade over time, but discipline is worth its weight in gold.  John C. Maxwell says, “Motivation gets you going, but discipline keeps you growing.”

Where do you want to grow?  What promises do you need to start keeping?  Has your motivation for an early morning devotional worn off?  Think about the blessings that will come and the fruit you will bear if you maintain the discipline of meeting with the Lord day after day.

Where else might you need to start keeping the promises you make to yourself?

I like waking up with determination and going to bed with satisfaction.

Are you failing to keep the promises you make to yourself?  If so, where? 

What are you going to do about it? 


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