Summary: Let’s not be rash in making promises, or make them for the wrong reason. But, when we make promises, we must fulfill our vows.


By Pastor Jim May

It is ever good to break a promise?

We all know that people have the “right” to "change their minds" from time to time. It is understandable that circumstances can arise after a promise is made that can make following through on commitments impossible. But, a promise is a promise, and if we break our promises all the time, then there comes a time when no one can trust us or depend upon us anymore. All credibility is gone. Our word is no longer our bond, but useless chatter. We become branded as talkers, but not doers.

The problem is that we often like to “Paint ourselves into a Corner”. We don’t know how to just say No!

How many times have I seen people make all kinds of promises and never follow through, or maybe they do follow through, but you can see that they really don’t want to and they are miserable the whole time.

I would rather that someone would be honest and truthful in the first place than to make promises that they don’t intend to keep.

If you are like me, I might be a little let down when someone says No, but I respect their honesty. There is nothing more discouraging than to have someone make a promise and then not show up and fulfill that promise. Any of us can come up with an excuse. We don’t mind making promises that we know we won’t keep because we can always come up with an excuse at the last minute and let me tell you that I’ve heard some good ones. I guess people must think that no one but them has the ability to reason or to think at all. Some of the excuses are about as lame as a wounded duck.

Let me give you a few examples of some real excuses used by parents for kids in school.

Please excuse John for being absent on Jan. 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, & 33.

Mary could not come to school because she is bothered by very close veins.

John has been absent because he had two teeth taken off his face.

Please excuse Ray Friday. He has loose vowels.

What about Excuses for accidents involving drivers? Here are a few good excuses that have been submitted on Insurance Claim forms.

An invisible car came out of nowhere, struck my car, and vanished.

The other car collided with mine without warning me of its intention.

I had been driving my car for 40 years when I fell asleep at the wheel and had the accident.

As I reached an intersection, a hedge sprang up, obscuring my vision.

I pulled away from the side of the road, glanced at my mother-in-law, and headed over the embankment.

The pedestrian had no idea which direction to go, so I ran over him.

The telephone pole was approaching fast. I attempted to swerve out of its path when it struck my front end.

The guy was all over the road. I had to swerve a number of times before I hit him.

The indirect cause of this accident was a little guy in a small car with a big mouth.

Christians aren’t any better at making up excuses than anyone else. In fact, we have made ours seem more “holy”.

Well, brother, I have to pray about it first and I haven’t been given direction by God.

I was listening to the preacher on the radio or TV and lost track of time.

I only get one day a week off and I have to rest sometime, so we went to the beach Sunday morning and then came home late and mowed the law just before dark.

One church came up with a novel idea. They created a “NO EXCUSE SUNDAY”.

To make it possible for everyone to attend church this Sunday, we are going to have a special "No Excuse Sunday. Cots will be placed in the foyer for those who say, "Sunday is my only day to sleep in." There will be a special section with lounge chairs for those who feel that our pews are too hard. Eye drops will be available for those with tired eyes from watching TV late Saturday night. We will have steel helmets for those who say, "The roof would cave in if I ever came to church." Blankets will be furnished for those who think the church is too cold, and fans for those who say it is too hot. Scorecards will be available for those who wish to list all the hypocrites present. Relatives and friends will be in attendance for those who can’t go to church and cook dinner, too. We will distribute "Stamp Out Stewardship" buttons for those that feel the church is always asking for money. One section will be filled in with trees and grass for those who like to seek God in nature. Doctors and nurses will be in attendance for those who plan to be sick. The sanctuary will be decorated with both Christmas poinsettias and Easter lilies for those who never have seen the church without them. We will provide hearing aids for those who can’t hear the preacher and ear plugs for those who think he’s too loud! Hope to see you there!

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