Jesus Boot Camp: Commitment

commitment:  an agreement or pledge to do
something in the future

I don’t know where the commitment of our son, James, to the God-given gift comes from. Is it from successes at an early age? Did his very gifted and supportive piano teacher inspire such commitment?  Was it the desperate attempt of the only guy in our small-town high school not playing a sport to make his mark? 

​What drives us to commitment? Success, inspiration, desperation?

Perhaps commitment, over time, gradually becomes entwined with and fueled by passion. 

For thirty years I’ve been James’ biggest (and sometimes loudest) cheerleader. I must confess, Dear Reader, for most of those years I cheered solely for his tangible achievements, awards, applause, accolades by peers, mentors, and audiences. 


Studio 2020 brought home the first place trophy at Waukee Starstruck on Saturday night. In addition, the group earned Best Vocals, Best Band, and Best Choreography. (It’s still a big deal for this stage mom, and James is never even on the show choir stage. His work goes on behind the scenes “polishing choreo” and directing the band.)

Then I grew up, mostly. I realized the commitment and passion James has for his music had taught him to be a man of integrity and excellence in everything he does. I still love it when James does well, but it’s also a powerful reminder of the work God is doing in and through him.

It was never about the music James could create or perform. It was about him growing into the heart God placed within him. Is our God amazing or what?

35 He walked a short distance away, and being overcome with grief, he threw himself face down on the ground. He prayed that if it were possible, he would not have to experience this hour of suffering36 He prayed, “Abba, my Father, all things are possible for you. Please—don’t allow me to drink this cup of suffering![a] Yet what I want is not important, for I only desire to fulfill your plan for me.”
​Mark 14: 35-36 TPT

We know from Luke’s Gospel that from an early age Jesus knew what He was sent to do (Luke 2: 41-50). It seems reasonable to me, Dear Reader, to think that by the time He began His ministry, Jesus was already committed to the work to be done.

Of course it’s a matter of speculation about whether or not Jesus knew the exact timeline of His ministry. Perhaps it wouldn’t have mattered whether it was about two years, or  two decades.

Can we begin to comprehend the enormity of the mission Jesus was sent to do, Dear Reader? Can we wrap our heads around how crucial commitment was, and is, to its success?

It’s easy for my 21st century American citizen and resident brain to forget the disciples lived in a time and place of extreme political unrest, and absolutely no employment benefit packages. Jesus didn’t call them to easy, popular, glamorous lives.

​He called them to devote everything they had for the rest of their lives. 

Daddy told me when he enlisted in the Army, with World War II on the horizon, men joined up for the duration. Commitment to be in it to the end of it. No promises of glory or survival. 

A friend who served in Viet Nam did not return to a ticker tape parade like our World War II vets, or Super Bowl Champions. He and many of his comrades returned to jeers and protest signs and being spit upon in airports. 

Along with so many things we can thank our military veterans for, they give us a slight understanding of the commitment that the disciples were called upon to make.

There’s still lots of work to be done, Dear Reader. Jesus is still calling for commitment in sharing His gospel, wherever, whenever, however we can. 

How blessed and honored we are that Jesus calls each of us! And how thankful we can be that we have been given His Word and the Holy Spirit to equip and empower us to fulfill our callings when we make the decision to commit to following Him.

Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust him to help you do it, and he will.
​Psalm 37:5  TLB

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