Devotional from Al Terpstra

Aboutccc   -  
As many or most of you may know, I’m in the midst of putting together a business “deal” that has taken
me overseas to India. There are a great number of factors, both physical and intellectual in nature, that must
be addressed in order to bring this deal to fruition. In that, I have to make commitments (promises) to the
potential customer, my business partners and vendors. Some of those commitments are directly tied to
the commitments I require from those same people. When there is a missed commitment (broken promise)
it creates a problem. Like the stone dropped in the water, creating ripples that extend well beyond the point
where the stone was dropped, the effects of a missed commitment can reach well beyond the commitment
breaker. The issue is not only whether the failure directly affects the deal, but, it also speaks to the credibility,
integrity and trustworthiness of the commitment/promise breaker. There are valid reasons for these failures
and some which are not.
It’s definitely the commitments not made which create the most tension. So, what do we do?
God is faithful to keep his promises:
Genesis 9:12-15 NIV – “And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every
living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come. I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will
be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow
appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind.
Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life”
As we are made in His image, we should also, when making a promise, do everything within our power to ensure
we can follow through. I’m not suggesting at every difficult moment we hedge our bets and not commit or promise
out of fear of failure, but ….:
Ecclesiastes 5:5 NIV – “It is better not to make a vow than to make one and not fulfill it”
We have all been let down at times, and at least for me, anger is the emotion that usually rises to the top. And then,
the reflex to repay “the favor”. It’s these times I need to be quiet and pray for patience, understanding and a load of
grace I can extend.

1 Peter:3-9 NIV – “Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this
you were called so that you may inherit a blessing”

It’s likely that you, just as I have too many times, have failed to keep your word. Not wanting to be re-payed with the
like, even though it’s deserved,  it’s forgiveness I/we need to seek … from God, for offending one of His image bearers
and forgiveness from the offended.
Ephesians 4:32 NIV – “Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you”
In conclusion – As I have failed others, sometimes my fault completely and sometimes due to circumstances completely
out of control, I’ve seen grace and mercy extended more than an “eye for an eye” in retribution from the world – and I
know that God is faithful to forgive and extend immeasurable grace and mercy when I surrender, confess and repent.