If you make a vow to the LORD your God, you shall not delay fulfilling it, for the LORD your God will surely require it of you, and you will be guilty of sin (Deuteronomy 23:21 ESV)
I think we can all agree that it is much easier to make promises than it is to keep them. Parents often make promises to their children, and far too often they do not keep them. We have even been known to make promises to ourselves in the form of a vow and not keep them either. The promises we make to ourselves would be things such as going back to school, writing a book, losing weight or taking our kids on a vacation. When God makes promises to us, He keeps everyone of them and He expects us to keep our promises too.
I remember as a young evangelist I was in a church that was raising money for a missions offering. I wanted to give so badly, but I did not have two pennies to rub together. Eventually I was overcome by the desire to give an offering, so I raised my hand and made a $250.00 pledge that I promised to pay within the next twelve months.
A few months later I moved to another city and soon forgot my vow for the missions offering. Twenty five years later I was sitting in my office one day and the Lord brought back to my remembrance the vow I had made to Him for the missions offering that I had not paid. I repented of the sin of not paying my vow to Him and promised I would take care of it immediately.
I am sure the church had changed pastors several times since I was there and had forgotten my vow‚Ä¶but God did not. I immediately got the address of the church and name of the pastor‚Ä¶and put a check in the mail with an apology for taking so long in paying my vow.
A few days later I received a letter from the pastor of that church thanking me for being so faithful in hearing God. The pastor told me he read my letter to his church on that next Sunday morning and showed the congregation my check. He said that the Spirit of the Lord filled the sanctuary, and other people began to repent for making promises and not keeping them.
I am still overwhelmed that God was so faithful in reminding me (without scolding me), of a vow I had made to Him so many years earlier.
While sitting in my office that day I learned two very important lessons. The first lesson was that God never forgets any promise you have made to Him and He will even help you fulfill it. The second lesson is that we are limited as to how far we can go in life if we do not keep our word to God and to man.
After thinking about this experience, over the years I have come to the conclusion that the amount of money was not the issue. It was about my word. If we make and break promises, then we are living a lie. For example our children should not have to filter what we say in order to determine how truthful we are.
I thank You that You are always faithful to us by Your Word. Help us Lord to be faithful to You by our words.
Apostle John Dean Copyright 2009 All Rights Reserved
Alliance International Ministries