When I was a kid, my friends and I made promises to each other and sealed them with the words, “I cross my heart and hope to die.” The implication was that we’d die if we failed to keep our word. Scary stuff for an 8-year-old, eh?
As an adult, I understand that a promise is only as good as the character of the person who makes it. If a person of questionable character says he’ll do something for me, I don’t waste my breath waiting for him to fulfill his word. I feel differently if a person of integrity makes a promise. I feel even more confident when God makes a promise.
Psalm 138:2 says, “I praise your name for your unfailing love and faithfulness, for your promises are backed by all the honor of your name.” When God makes a promise, we can be absolutely sure that He’ll fulfill. Why? Because His reputation depends on it. He’s a God of love and faithfulness, and He’ll never tarnish that reputation or smear His name by failing to keep His Word.
Recently I’ve begun ending my prayers with these words: “God, as best I know, I’ve prayed according to Your will and promises. Now back those promises by the honor of Your name.” I don’t know if these words make my prayers more effective, but they sure build my confidence in God’s willingness and ability to answer.
What promise has been especially meaningful to you recently?