Commitment is defined as a promise or firm decision to do something, whereas dedication is defined as self-sacrificing devotion and loyalty (Merriam-Webster). Based on these definitions, it appears that commitment is a pledge while dedication is the outworking of that pledge. Commitment is like a vow that remains empty until is coupled with action. So to fulfill a commitment, dedication is needed as it calls one to act and align one’s priorities to the achievement of the goal.
Commitment and dedication, by nature, are the core values of visionaries because of their attitude to finish a work that they began in view of the fulfillment of the vision. It is necessary therefore that the vision, as an inner drive for commitment and dedication, is real and vivid in the heart and mind of the people pursuing it. It is like running a race where the runner runs with the end in view that he or she will not be running in vain. At the end of the race, one can say that “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith”. Paulo Coelho, a Brazilian novelist, quoted in relation to this: “You are not defeated when you lose; you are defeated when you quit”.
The value of commitment and dedication becomes more meaningful when put to challenge. “Will you be persistent from start to finish?” is the apt question in relation to it. Staying put, however, is not an issue when the goal is possible to achieve and the mission is not compromised in the process. This is common among troops on critical assignment for purposes of regrouping and re-planning to avoid fatalities and undesired outcome. This makes a well-defined roadmap necessary in carrying out duties and responsibilities. People on the ground discharge their functions naturally when procedures are clear and the objectives are pure and unblemished.
With the motivation to do better this 2021, it is good to assess our present performance whether it is still a reflection of commitment and dedication or not. Is there a need to revisit any oath of commitment that we have entered into in the past in order to propel us for a forward thrust? Is there any point or instance where our foresight is clouded with circumstances that causes our dedication to dwindle? In public service, there are solemn declarations being made by employees or officials of the government before they assume their public functions. If we belong to the civil service, do we still recall these words of affirmation that we have made? Are we still holding on to them? Even if we are not, our laws require us to remain the same. The Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees require us to stay committed and dedicated to our public functions. The law was emphatic particularly commitment to public interest and commitment to democracy. We should enjoin ourselves to be such as expected. (NAS, CRFV)
Living a victorious and abundant life designed by God is without question the need for these times.
God created man and woman in His image and likeness. We are the closest expression of God. God built us to last and put the right ingredients in us as we are designed not to fail but to prevail and enjoy an abundant life, for this was the very purpose why His Son came. For Jesus said in the scriptures: “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” God desired that we won’t just have life but live it more abundantly through the regenerating power of the Holy Spirit. Abundant life is the life which understands personal blessing and victory over sin and adversities which in turn paves a way for others to experience their own breakthrough. This kind of life is lived in and through the Spirit. For “In Him we live and move and have our being.”
Living in the Spirit or spirituality is our powerhouse. We can live with sufficiency as He is more than enough for us. We function without inadequacy because we are resourced from above. We might feel weak but He assured us that in our weakness, His strength is made perfect within us. We don’t have thoughts of inferiority because it is God who affirms and stands for us. Spirituality anchors us in realizing the fullness of heaven’s provision for us as He gave us His Son, His Spirit and His Word.
The tragedy for many is that they fail to live this kind of life. People miss it because they were enslaved by depravity, debauchery and sin. Such negative spirituality is evident in depression, stress, fear, frustration, bitterness, inordinate struggle, breakdown and defeat. But God made a way for us to step in to the realm of godliness and God-ordained spirituality. He calls us to reason with Him and promised that though our sins may like be scarlet or red as crimson, we can be forgiven and cleansed by faith. As we connect with Him, we will be changed and renewed in the spirit of our mind. The result of which is that we are translated from darkness into His marvelous light, from wickedness to righteousness and from defeat to victory according to the richness of His mercy and grace. Thus, we are restored in the spirit.
To conclude, living in the Spirit ushers in abundant life. The operation of an empowered and resurrected spiritual life opens the possibility of victory in all fronts of our lives. Spirituality brings us to the region of faith. Then, we can truly experience what Charles H. Spurgeon (1834-1892) has said: “The man who lives in the region of faith dwells in the realm of miracles.”
Let abundant life manifest. Let miracles flow. (JVS, CRFV)
Integrity: Way to a Righteous Life
A Filipino man was on an overseas trip. In the hotel lobby, while he awaited his room on the 18th floor to be set, he was approached by a stranger and gorgeous woman. He was asked if he wants a good time with her, but tells her no and that he is married. The man then tailed the hotel porter to the elevator up to his room. Integrity is the unwavering and unchanging display of a person’s uprightness in whatever situations. So Young Kang says, “Integrity requires an inner sense of ‘wholeness’ and consistency of character. When you are ‘whole’ and consistent, there is only one you. You bring that same you wherever you are regardless of the circumstance.” The said description resonates with the Latin adjective integer, where the word integrity evolved from, meaning whole and complete.
Moreover, integrity is something “we’re not born with it - or without it - which means that it’s a behavior-based virtue we can cultivate over time,” says psychologist Seth Meyers. Consequently, we could commence being a person of integrity with the help of God by exercising the following: do what you say you would do, arrive before the scheduled time of appointment, serve others ahead of yourself, be transparent with your spouse, value others opinion, take responsibility for your action, accept your fault and do better, give people the benefit of the doubt, and do a favor for others without expecting in return. Alan Cohen said the test of integrity is when the life you live on the outside matches who you are on the inside.
Furthermore, “People with integrity walk safely, but those who follow crooked paths will be exposed”. This scriptural passage teaches that whenever our life contradicts not the moral law, authored by God, we are under his favor and watch. While people accuse, blame, or intimidate us on our morally upright principles, as revealed in the Scriptures and the Constitution, God would surely vindicate us as we are on his side. In contrast, people who choose to live the crooked way would find themselves disgrace as God exposes their moral failure for correction and discipline.It says in the book of Proverbs that the integrity of the upright guides them, but the crookedness of the treacherous destroys them.” (LCM, CRFV)
them.” (LCM, CRFV)
A new year, a fresh start. Celebrating New Year usually invites us to look back with gratefulness for surviving and thriving the past year and, with excitement, we look forward to what lies ahead. Inspired by one’s determination and passion to right the wrongs and bring the right to a higher level, it also gives us a sense of a new life. Such reflection is normally focused on the individual, family relationships and the immediate environment. However, with the current crisis confronting the society, this New Year celebration calls us to widen our perspective of a new start not just for ourselves but also for the nation. This brings us to reflect on the value of patriotism.
Patriotism, or our love for the nation, is the mark of a true citizen. Every citizen then must endeavor to contribute for the good of the nation rather than satisfying one’s personal interest at the expense of this nation. Naturally, a person always looks for the benefit or what he or she gets rather than what he or she gives for being part of a nationality. A true Filipino makes sacrifices to keep this nation free – free from invasion but as well as free from all forms of ills in society. This is what we profess every time we sing our national anthem. Gone are the days that we take advantage of our position, power, or undue influence to amass wealth for personal gain. We abdicate our personal wishes and ambitions for public good.
Looking into the above perspective, exemplifying patriotism is not just determined by patronizing local products. Loving the nation requires us to exert effort for the betterment of the country. A vision for a better Philippines and doing something to make it a reality become part of a citizen’s heartbeat. It does not have to be nationwide in scope. It can be done within our means and within our own influence. We can contribute something in our offices, agency, or barangay. It is proactively creating an impact and significant change within our reach. For instance, policing our own ranks so there will be no corruption and malpractices in government is helpful enough to safeguard our nation from abuse and destruction because our nation can be destroyed internally and need not externally. We work not only for the nation’s independence from foreign intrusions but also from local intrusions by people who profess to love the Philippines yet their actions characterize a traitor.
At the peak of the pandemic, we have heard certain huge amounts of budget that were not properly accounted for. There were services rendered and goods acquired that did not go through the standard operating procedures. News of inefficiencies and other irregularities saturate different media platforms. These are the things that our nation must be protected from. Our nation must have freedom from all forms of impropriety in government if we are to realize progress and prosperity in the country.
In all of these, how much do we care? As we have entered 2021, we must have a new beginning where the old ways are gone and the new living way has become. Let us bring the future in our days by sowing the seeds now. Glory is waving at the horizon. (AOS, CRFV)
CRFV Winning Team
A company of men and women who have committed their lives to the cause of national transformation.