“But what do you think?” A man had two sons, and he came to the first and said, ‘Son, go, work today in my vineyard.’ He answered and said, ‘I will not,’ but afterward he regretted it and went. Then he came to the second and said likewise. And he answered and said, ‘I go, sir,’ but he did not go.” Matthew 21:28-30, NKJV.
There is a sharp difference between devotion and commitment. To commit means to pledge, and thereby binding oneself to a word. To devote means to freely give of ones time to a specific cause. Where I would normally say commitment, I have recently transformed my vocabulary to saying devotion.
You see, commitment is good. It is good to say, “I will do it for you,” because it holds the promise and gives assurance to the person or cause you wish to commit to. Yet, commitment is by word and word alone, while devotion is about doing. As men we, we should talk the talk AND walk the walk.
In the parable, the first son showed more devotion to His father than His brother. Even though he disrespected his father in speech, he still honored him by going to the vineyard afterward. How many times have you committed to a cause with such burning passion, and then somewhere along the line, things get complicated–and by complicated I mean excuses get the upper hand, your fire runs out or you just grow weary. The book of James advises us to be doers of the Word, and not hearers alone.
Let me tell you this: There can be times the people you devote to, will not even notice what you do. Can you imagine how God must feel? This can be applied to all areas of our lives because devotion is one of the greatest acts of love, and mysteriously, people can overlook it–but not the Lord.
Regardless, be devoted to your wife, be devoted to your family, your friends, your work and above all of this be devoted to your God. Why? Because the Father is utterly and totally devoted to you. He says, “I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward” (Genesis 15:1). He also says He shall work a work in your day (Habakkuk 1:5). Just think of all the provision He makes for you on a daily basis. So devote yourself each day anew to God’s will for your life, and you shall inherit His kingdom.
Prayer: Father God, your devotion to me has gripped my heart. Please forgive me for straying from Your perfect will, and thank you for loving me even through my stumbling. Lord Jesus, please help me when I grow weary, and remind me that the reward in You is greater than any Earthly joy. Father, grant me the wisdom to discern where my devotion should rest, for Your word says where my treasure is, there my heart will be also. I will devote myself to You anew. Holy Spirit move within me, and may the glory of the Kingdom rise and spread to every person who comes into contact with me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Study: Matthew 6:21, 21:31, James 1:22-27, Acts 20:35