“To Keep a Promise” by Reva Lachica Moore
Have you ever made a deal with someone and reneged on your promise? I’ve heard folks say, “If ever I win the lottery, I will help others.” Or, “If I become famous, I will never forget my roots.” “I give you my word!” Someone would say and seal the promise with a handshake.
We all make deals. We all make promises. Some people even swear. We make promises to our children, our spouses, our friends. We even make promises to God: “God, if You do this for me, I will do this for You! I promise!” But most of the time, as soon as things do go our way, we renege on our word. Our promise had instantly vanished.
When someone we know reneges on a promise, sometimes we could overlook it. But sometimes we become quite upset when a promise isn’t kept in situations that mean a lot to us. This happened to me during my college days. I owned a rather expensive camera that was given to me and a friend asked for it one day.
“I’m going home on vacation. Can I borrow your camera? I promise to return it as soon as I get back,” my friend said.
I lent her the camera but upon her return, she told me that she gave my camera to her brother, thinking I wouldn’t mind. Unfortunately, this was a broken promise that caused our friendship. I can no longer trust this person.
When Hurricane Katrina created havoc in Louisiana, two huge trees fell in our backyard. Due to many fallen trees in our city at that time, we called many professional tree cutters but nobody could come right away. After three weeks of waiting, someone finally came and gave us an estimate: $5600 to cut and pile up the wood and then haul the debris. We were happy that finally our backyard would look normal again.
To make it easy for the tree cutters, my husband cut the smaller branches with a chainsaw. On the start of the first workday, four tree cutters came and worked until sunset. We provided them drinking water and snacks. At the end of the first day, they asked for half of the money, which we gave to them.
The following day, we offered to provide them lunch, which made them quite happy. We invited them inside our house to eat and had a great time with them. At the end of the second day, a third of the cut wood (a few around 3 ft. wide trunks) still lay in our backyard. We offered the tree cutters to take all the firewood they wanted; they filled up two pickup trucks with the smaller sizes. But before they left, their boss asked if we could give them the rest of the money. They promised to come the next morning to finish the work. Bad mistake! We never saw the tree cutters again. For 3 days, JR and I finished the work ourselves, cutting and pulling huge tree trunks with our SUV.
In the Bible, Jesus gave a parable: “A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said, ‘Son, go work today in my vineyard.’ The son answered and said, ‘I will not.’ But afterward the son repented and went. And the father came to the second son and said likewise. And the second son answered and said, ‘I will go, Sir,’ but went not. And Jesus asked, ‘Which one of them did the will of his father?’” Matt. 21: 28-31.
Keeping your promise to God is very important. Personally, I’d rather not make a promise to God if I cannot keep it.
A Louisiana man whose daughter was very ill pleaded with God for her healing: “God, please heal my daughter. If You heal her, I will build You a church.”
God answered the man’s prayer and the ill daughter had her miracle. Since the father promised to build a church, he found himself in a quandary. He didn’t have enough funds to build the church. Yet he kept his promise to God. He built a beautiful church even though it’s not the typical type of church you’d usually see. The church is very small. An (8 ft X 10 ft.) structure where only 6 people could worship at one time. Even though the church is small, yet the father kept his promise. (I’ve been inside this small church).
In the Bible, a barren woman called Hannah prayed to God for a child. She promised that if God answers her prayers, she’d give her child to Him. Hannah conceived and after the birth of little Samuel, she gave Samuel up so he could live and serve God in the temple. Hannah kept her promise to God.
Many years ago, I received a rather unusual letter from Vesmen Lucenara of Mindanao. He wrote: “Ma’am, when I was in my mother’s womb, my mother promised to give me to God. My mother said that I was her “investment” to Jesus; when I was born, she gave me the name “Vesmen” from the word “Investment. Ma’am, I am now married with four children but because of my mother’s promise, I wish to keep her word. I want to go to college to be a minister, but I don’t have any money. Will you please help me?”
Certainly, the first son in Jesus’ parable, the man with the sick daughter, and Vesmen are doing the will of God.
“I ALSO MADE A VOW”
I have been very sick for 3 months and a month ago, I pleaded with God to please heal me and that I will post my Sharing Time stories that I wrote since 2001. “Jesus, please heal me. I promise, Jesus, for I cannot do this while I am sick, Lord.” The following day after I made that vow, I forgot about my promise. But God reminded me when I opened my Bible and I opened to this (picture of Bible verse).
Deuteronomy 23: 21 – 23 “When you make a vow to the Lord your God, you shall not delay to pay it; for the Lord your God will surely require it of you, and it would be sin to you. 22 But if you abstain from vowing, it shall not be sin to you. 23 That which has gone from your lips you shall keep and perform, for you voluntarily vowed to the Lord your God what you have promised with your mouth.
THIS IS WHY YOU ARE SEEING MY STORIES POSTED AGAIN.