5 Rules to Avoid Regrettable Commitments

Who knew a book on business could be so rich? Well, I can tell you that Larry Burkett’s book Business by the Book is.

For example, in chapter 6, Keeping Vows, he gives five simple rules that could not only be applied to good business practice but also good personal living practice. He developed them to avoid making commitments he might later regret:

  1. When in Doubt, Say No
  2. Keep a “Year at a Glance” Calendar
  3. Prioritize the Day
  4. Don’t Book Too Far Ahead
  5. Use a Written Contract

Here are two quotes from the chapter that seem to support the need for these rules:

  • Situational ethics have so shaped our society that even God’s people have lost the concept of absolutes when it comes to keeping our word.
  • The probability of a misunderstanding in a written agreement has been calculated at 20%, more or less. The probability of a misunderstanding in a verbal agreement is nearly 100%!
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Moses: 40 Years of Captured Awe

Exodus 3&4 recount the call of Moses out of a 40-year exile to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt. God’s awe-filled display is dismissed by Moses’ fear. Read Paul David Tripp’s words on this scene (chapter 2 of Awe):

At the end of God’s glorious display of power, Moses begs God to send someone else. It’s as if fear of personal inadequacy and political danger has completely blinded his eyes to the awesome glory of the One sending him. Moses is not in awe of God. No, the awe capacity of his heart has been captured by fear of the Egyptians, and all he can think of is being released from the task to which God has appointed him.

Captured. Has your awe been captured? What does that even mean?

It means your awe has been redirected toward something or someone that doesn’t represent your best option, purpose, or worship. In Moses’ 40-year-captured case, this happened because of fear. 

You may think a lack of focus or maybe thoughts of doubt or confusion are to blame. Most likely, the root of your captured awe isn’t doubtful, confusing thoughts or inability to focus. Most likely, a fear is responsible.

Might it be a fear of comparison…of failure…of rejection…of success…of loss…of uncertainty…of loneliness…of pain…of expectations?

What if you saw God as the source of love…of purpose…of forgiveness…of healing…of power…of everything?

What if you remembered that God filled your lungs with breath…took you as you were…brought you out of the dark?

What if you released fear and gave God back your captured awe?