The Five Promises
Someone has said, “We are the product of the five promises we make ourselves early in life.”
It is an interesting concept. In looking at this idea, the first thing you might notice is that your promises and others will rarely be identical.
For instance, a boy who grew up scraping by financially may resolve that when he is older he “will never be without money.”
Or a girl who is sadly abused by those she trusted, might promise herself that she “will never again be hurt by a man,” or “she would die before she let her children be abused.” Many folks repeat these promises out loud as if they are a mantra.
Possibly, a son that moves so much he is in eight schools in twelve years may promise himself “when I am older, I will not move around like this, and I will put down some roots.”
Another trait you might recognize is that these promises affect others. Take the boy who grows up covenanting within himself to always have plenty of money. This might lead him to work hard and invest money. Conversely, it could also lead to life of embezzlement and other crimes. Unfortunately, many folks have made promises to themselves after seeing hypocrisy in the church. Maybe they said they “never be a member of a church again.” This affects their children who, by default, will not be raised in a church at all.
The timing of the promises can vary as well. Some of the promises that affect our lives also happen much later in life. For instance, when a salesman has the door slammed in his face one too many times, he may decide to go get a degree such that clients will come to him. Certainly, in the practice of law, students will often clerk for lawyers who work in an area of law that they find unpalatable. That student may promise himself that he will never practice that type of law when he is licensed.
It has been said that, if you want to change, you have to change one of your earlier promises to yourself. There may be truth in that. However, what changed me was a real encounter with the Living God, who became a man. His name is Jesus. He is still in the life-changing business. If you are at the end of your rope, let go. Seek Him.