Commitment. A word that has come to mean very little in our current society. Merriam-Webster defines commitment as
- A promise to do or give something
- A promise to be loyal to someone or something
- The attitude of someone who works very hard to do or support something
Dedication. Another word that has lost its meaning in today’s world.
- A feeling of very strong support for or loyalty to someone or something
- The quality or state of being dedicated to a person, group, cause, etc.
Continuing my personal study through the book of 1 Samuel, I come to the point in the narrative where Hannah has to follow through on her commitment to the Lord regarding her only son, Samuel. She cried out to God to give her a child and promised if He would bless her in this way, that she would dedicate the child into His service.
That time had arrived.
“After the boy is weaned, I will take him and present him before the Lord, and he will live there always.” After he was weaned, she took the boy with her, young as he was, along with a three-year-old bull, an ephah of flour and a skin of wine, and brought him to the house of the Lord at Shiloh. – 1 Samuel 1:22,24
Can you imagine what that must have been like for her? The very thing, her son no less, that she had cried out to God for, she must now give up. That’s commitment! That’s dedication!
I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him. So now I give him to the Lord. For his whole life he will be given over to the Lord.” – 1 Samuel 1:27-28
It reminds me of the sacrifice that God made through His Son, Jesus. Promises were made. Hannah had committed to God that her son would be dedicated to serve the Lord. God committed to providing a Savior in Isaiah 53 and in other places in the Old Testament. I’m so grateful that we serve a God who keeps His Word! He’s dedicated! He’s committed!
So it begs the question of me today…am I committed? Am I dedicated? The easy answer is yes! It’s easy to look at only the things in my life that point to service and devotion, but then there are other things to consider. Areas of life where I know I’m reluctant to give up control. Things that I’m not willing to part with so easily.
I want to be more like Hannah and ultimately, more like Christ. I want to follow through with the commitments that I make to the Lord and to others. I want to have the kind of devotion and dedication it takes to even give up the things that mean the most to me if God leads me. The Christian life is quite a challenging journey.
What about you? Does your life reflect Hannah’s commitment and dedication?