When One Commits the Present One Commits the Future
“When one commits to walk in relationship with someone in the present one is also committing the future.” Taking this morning slow. Woke up much later than usual, had my two tall glasses of cold water, probiotics (Thanks Miguel!), and sat down to read my Bible before a short swim and quick workout (emphasis on the short and quick). While reading from John 16, I came upon the following verses: “A time is coming and in fact has come when you will be scattered, each to your own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me. “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:32-33 NIV) The line “A time is coming and in fact has come…” hit me because I remembered seeing it in other parts of the Bible, particularly in parts that quote Jesus. On different occasions, Jesus uses this idea of an upcoming thing that has already arrived to describe what will happen to those who follow Him. He would call people to follow Him, “This is what life’s going to be like with me around” and He goes on to describe both good and bad things, painful and miraculous things coming and already present. While I’m no expert, the way the line “the time is coming and has come”, seems to say that all Jesus’ promises, which include the good and the bad (and there are some scary ones), present and future, arrived when He arrived because His arrival was not only a commitment to be with man at the present but to be with us forever. I thought about it for a while in light of the knowledge that Jesus was inviting people into a relationship, which my dad reminds us in his book The Lego Principle is to be contained in a journey (ship) with someone you’re related to (such as family) or have chosen to be related to (like in the case of a spouse). Here’s what I think that line means: I believe it reminds us a of the commitment bond of walking with someone. By committing to someone in the present, we automatically commit to them in the future. Jesus was saying that being in a relationship means committing to the present and the future, to choose to walk with someone today, you choose to walk with that someone tomorrow, because you choose to embrace someone today, you are choosing to embrace that someone tomorrow, because when you choose to be in relationship with someone, you’ve chosen to contain yourself on life’s journey with them, meaning everything they are today and everything they’re going to be has now entered your life, and everything they’ve done and everything they’re going to do will affect you. To be in relationship with someone from a biblical sense means understanding that loving someone today means loving them tomorrow. This has some huge implications and I thought of the following: 1. Who you choose to love matters greatly. Who you love, what you love will determine what you will enjoy and suffer – and life’s a mix of both. We may not have control over a lot of things, but we can control who we experience ups and downs with, and as we’re reminded many times, being with wonderful people can make the most mundane and even tragic experience valuable. I wrote more about love and privileges in this article. 2. Before you make marriage vows, understand their extent. This is in no way to defend those who are against divorce. (I actually believe society needs a fair, organized, and unbiased system or mechanism to deal with marriage failures, particularly in the cases of unfaithfulness and abuse. Maybe I’ll write about that in the future.) But by saying the lines “for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, till death do us part” means promising to take on all of that person for all of time. Why do you think I’m not married? – Yet. This is also why I write about looking for this particular quality in a parter: Someone who walks humbly before God, because someone who does can only get better as he or she is transformed through love and correction. 3. How truly infinite is God’s love. I started remembering verses about how no eye has seen, ear has heard, or mind has conceived, or how vast His love for us. When Jesus would teach, He didn’t teach by just transferring information. He taught as someone inviting us to travel with Him. To follow Him means to travel with Him. And for those who have chosen to do so, He speaks to us as someone who has already committed to travel with us today and during the time that is yet to arrive. “When one commits to walk in relationship with someone in the present one is also committing the future.” – Choose who you love wisely. – Commit with understanding. – Consider the great love of God that commits Himself today and forever.