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July 1, 2013

Commitments

I finished two books last week and both authors referenced times when they made a personal commitment of discipline in some area of their life. I decided I needed to do the same. When we take time to examine our lives, we'll find areas that need some work. How many times have you felt you needed to pray more, spend more time in the Word, be more generous, eat healthier and exercise, or watch less TV? We know these things be a blessing and draw us closer to God, but we often become complacent and fail to act. Somehow we've forgoten that the life of a disciple of Jesus Christ demands the denial of self (Mt. 16:24). Makeing a personal committment to areas of discipline will help bring an awareness of this process back into your life. That doesn't mean next week you need to live like the Apostle Paul, but it does mean you need to start where you're at.

In Seeing through the Fog: Hope When Your World Falls Apart, Ed Dobson made a radical committment to live like Jesus for a year. I don't think I'm ready for that, but God did speak to me about some things I could do. One of  which is to blog everday through July. I want to encourage you to think about a personal commitment of discipline. I'd love to hear what people come up with and how God works in your life through this. Here are a few things to consider when making a personal commitment.

1. Pray first. Ask the Holy Spirit for His help and guidence (Mt. 7:7).
2. Write it down. Put your committment on paper (or Evernote like I did) and sign your name. Make it visible.
3. Be specific. Use "smart" goals that are measurable and doable. Set a specific time frame.
4. Start small. Don't overwhelm yourself with unrealistic committments. Find something doable yet challenging. This has to be a sacrifice. It has to stretch you and change your thinking (Rom. 12:1-2).
5. Make yourself accountable. Tell a spouse, friend, or accountability person what your commitments are (or the entire internet like I'm doing now).
6. Journal. Take time to journal your thoughts and your experiences.