Nehemiah 4:6 – “So we built the wall, and the entire wall was joined together up to half its height, for the people had a mind to work.”  NKJV

The phrase “a mind to work” is emphatic in Hebrew and indicates the people had “the heart to work.  That indicates their hearts were fully committed to and involved in the project.  I have long contended that whatever we have a heart for, we will find it a joy, not a drudgery.  Unless the heart is convinced, the effort will falter in the face of difficulty.  Conversely, if the heart is firmly fixed on the objective, the difficulty will only be a bump in the road, not defeat. 

You have heard the term ‘half-hearted’!  I have always stated that in the churches I led, I would rather have a person whose heart is in it but with lesser qualifications than someone with an impressive resume that is half-hearted.  I want those propelled by their passion for the project rather than one doing it for position or acclaim. 

In this situation, building the walls of Jerusalem, they experienced fierce opposition from Sanballat and his cohorts.  I contend that they would have scurried into the shadows to avoid conflict if they had been faint of heart.  They were mocked, ridiculed, and those in opposition decried their ability and questioned at what pace they could complete their work.  Nehemiah said the wall was joined and was erected to half the planned height in the face of severe opposition and difficulty.  Why?  His simple explanation did not exclude the Hand of God but focused on the Commitment and Dedication of the laborers.

I believe a lack of commitment is evident in some of today’s modern churches and Christians.  We live in a world of ease and instant everything.  I call it a “microwave world” where we press a button, and presto, the finished product is there. 

I grew up on a small family farm in rural East Texas, and few things came easy, and virtually nothing came quickly.  We faced obstacles, and often they seemed daunting, but we knew the task set before us, and my parents’ hearts were in the viability of that farm and in providing for us three kids a life that provided food, shelter, and clothing.  Of course, the greatest thing they gave us was not material.  They gave us love and taught us perseverance; I will be eternally grateful for that.

I have often wondered about the lack of commitment in today’s church.  I have concluded that, at least in part, it is because there is no common vision.  The Bible teaches us that “where there is no vision, the people perish,” and one translation says, “the people run wild.”  I have often wondered if the lack of commitment is because people do not want to take that step or do not have the knowledge needed to see the vision.

I do not believe there can be a genuine commitment to anything people do not understand clearly.  That element of knowledge or knowing and understanding must comprise several factors. 

  • We will not commit to what we do not understand or when we do not know what we are committing to. 

I may love and trust you dearly, but if you ask me to commit to a project and I do not understand or know what that project is and its purpose, I will find it challenging to do so. 

  • We must grasp the value of that to which we are being asked to commit. 

Why are we doing it?  Why is it necessary?  What impact will it have on me, others, and the kingdom? 

  • We must understand the benefits of completing the project and, in that, the benefits of our commitment to the task.

When we make a commitment, such as in marriage, it is not simply an emotional commitment but one that is reasoned.  Both emotion and intellect or reason are involved.  We count the costs and weigh the benefits and impact on our lives.  When one makes a commitment, they make a covenant and bind themselves to their word to see it through to the end. 

Sadly, we live in a world that operates from a ‘contract’ rather than a ‘covenant’ mentality.  In business, professional sports, and even relationships, we do not view our commitment as binding but binding so long as it benefits us in the way we desire. 

A genuine commitment is a personal pledge to do whatever it takes, within reason, to get the job done.   Commitment is not convenience and may and likely will cost us something if not much.  Jesus made the commitment to come and die for mankind, and He refused to allow anything to deter His fulfillment of the commitment. 

If we Commit fully and completely to the LORD and to that which is set before us, we will begin to see dramatic changes in the labors and success of the Church in this present world.  Commitment propels a person to reach the objective and obtain the prize.  It is epitomized through persistence!  A person that is committed will not and cannot quit!  Remember the words of Paul in Galatians 6:9, “And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap IF we do not lose heart.”  You cannot win if you quit!

God bless you is my desire and prayer!

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