A Great Principle for Teens to Learn

Before Jesus began to transform my character, I was fickle and untrustworthy. I would make promises and then break them. I would commit to plans and then cancel. I lived an unpredictable, selfish, and indecisive life. As I began to read the Bible and consider the principles that would now shape daily living, I realized that God enables Christians to live with integrity.

They keep their word. They do what they say they are going to do.

I underlined the deeply convicting words in Psalm 15 called, “Guidelines for Living a Blameless Life.” I knew nothing about this kind of living. I began to take notes. I read that godly people speak the truth from their hearts (verse 2); they do not slander or gossip (verse 3). I had heard about this kind of godliness, but then I read this:

“[The godly person] keeps his oath even when it hurts.”

I thought about all the plans I canceled because a better offer came along. I thought of breaking commitments because I was too selfish to follow through.

So when my daughter approaches us with a dilemma that she’s already committed to one group of friends and to a club event while another group of friends offered a much better, much more exciting invitation, I read her Psalm 15. It’s a familiar conversation that we approached in elementary school for similar reasons. But we return to it every year.

But she’ll miss so much! Can’t she just break her prior commitment?

That’s what the old me would do. But there’s a new me that walks with God. And I choose the path of godliness because it’s never worth it to disobey God. I remember. I know what she’s feeling and what it means to grow into the kind of adult that aligns daily life to scripture.

Of course it hurts to do the right thing. If it didn’t, then everyone would do the right thing, right? My husband chimes in that the Bible has already made the decision for her. There’s no dilemma here. We always keep the first commitment.

And even though it hurts, nothing compares to knowing that you’re pleasing God with a hard decision.


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