Resolution Dissolution

I admit I’ve made no resolutions this year.

I have no intention of failing at some huge task that I can’t hope to meet. In fact, I’m taking commitment generally a lot more seriously. For proof, see yesterday’s little rant.

So, to what am I currently committed? Here’s a list.

  • Since 2000 I’ve been committed to a rather nice young lady who consented to be my wife. We married in 2001 so this year will be our 10th anniversary.
  • Since 1994 I have been a baptised member of the church as recognised by a bunch of Baptists, and since my confirmation in the Church of England and acceptance as a member of the Methodist Church, I’m committed to these two congregations in the town where I live.
  • I’m committed to three sons since before they drew breath.
  • I’m committed to playing, making, writing, reading, listening to and otherwise enjoying music and poetry, and have been since I was old enough to understand their worth.
  • I’m not very committed to Newcastle United, but they seem not very committed to winning… so that’s OK.

I have spiritual and employment commitments, and financial commitments, and some looser social ones that involve me not telling secrets or owing someone or other a pint, but you get the idea from the list above.

And now the question that I’d love to pose. In a world where most of the people in the news are making commitments and being criticised for not delivering, failing to meet a commitment someone else made, being exposed as liars and frauds and cheats, where is my example? Who shows me how these promises should be managed and kept? The value of all these commitments and agreements in general seems to wane before our eyes daily.

I know that I can draw on the faith and experience of the Christians around me to keep me level and above water, and I have a faith in a God who’s able to keep me from falling, but how much tougher is it if you’re relying only on other fallible people, or just yourself?

The biggest threat to us is usually ourselves. No amount of waving weapons at each other, therapy, malice or football will change these unless something changes on the inside.

And a commitment to oneself is remarkably … selfish. Surely, there’s a possibility of being selfish in a good way?


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