A friend made the following statement on Facebook this week: “On flakiness--If I commit to you and then bail, my word can't be trusted. If I say, "Yes, I'll be there," and then don't show, what does that say about your value to me? I think it says you're a commodity meant for my entertainment, not a valuable human being. When something more entertaining comes along, I toss you aside.”
The 16-comment thread that ensued was interesting to follow. The conversation spoke to personal selfishness the Spirit recently revealed to me (through an honest friend). I have difficulty committing. It’s so much easier (and self-serving) to offer a fluid “I’ll see” reply to invitations. When really, the only valid excuse for my vacillating is to stay open in case a better offer comes along. My focus is on self and personal pleasure rather than valuing a friend. Ouch.
Last night, a friend who mentioned he’d been offered Texas Ranger tickets for tonight’s game, but he wasn’t going because of a prior commitment to attend a party with a friend. I was shocked. My attempts to dissuade him from the party only left me embarrassed. His noble response seemed more like something from Pride and Prejudice than a modern-day man. He corrected me, “I value my friend and my commitment to her. I don’t feel like it would be right to go back on my word because I received a more attractive offer.”
The truth is, “When you dishonor agreements, vows or promises in order to gain some advantage, you become the real loser, because whatever may have been gained will never replace your lost integrity.”(1)
I wonder, if I treat my friends this way, am I also flaky in my relationship with God? Do I bail on spending time with Him when something more attractive arises? Do I frequently reschedule our ‘dates’? Am I even wishy-washy in setting a specific quiet time because I’m afraid my commitment might get in the way? Do my decisions speak of a self-serving, or Christ-loving devotion to God?
Convicted, I’ve asked several friends to keep me accountable to making/keeping commitments. May the Lord help each of us become trustworthy, men and women of integrity in both our relationships with God and others.