As Good As Your Word

The Abundant Life: Riches money can’t buy…

Those living the abundant life keep their word. “A man is as good as his word” is an old expression. It means a person is reliable and truthful.

Keeping one’s word is a rare quality today. It’s almost unheard of among politicians. It’s becoming a lost art form among regular folks as well. Sadly, we have come to expect and accept this. Cicero told us the tragedy of not keeping your word is that eventually “a liar is not believed even though he tells the truth.” It’s a real breath of fresh air today when you meet someone who actually keeps his word.

Thirty-five years we lived in Appalachia and wanted to purchase a little land so we could build a house. Farmer Brown had some acreage that caught our eye. When we met he told us he had a special affection for this particular parcel of land because he wanted to give it to his son to build on. Then he quoted us some astronomically low amount.

He said he liked us. We were a nice, young couple with two small children and he wanted to help us. We quickly agreed to his price and said we would have a contract drawn up immediately. He found this insulting. He said if we needed a contract the deal was off. His handshake should be a good enough bond for us. We trusted him and shook on it. He was refreshing, honest, and true to his word.

That was many years ago and I’m not sure we would have that kind of confidence in a man’s word today—even in Appalachia. There has been too much media exposure on ways to lie, cheat, and steal and even more glorification of those who do. Politicians, CEOs, salesmen, and almost everyone you meet are adept at twisting words to get what they want. If a “man is as good as his word” there are not that many good men left.

The Bible speaks of a good name being better than precious ointment and more valuable than riches. (Ecclesiastes 7:1; Proverbs 22:1) Putting confidence in those who are not true to their word can be painful. (Proverbs 25:19) As Christians, others should be able to count on what we say. They should be able to rely on us to be there when we say we’ll be there. Or at the very least, receive a call to let them know why we didn’t make it.

To some, keeping our word may seem like a little thing. However, when we break our word we show a lack of respect, fracture a trust, and erode credibility. Assuredly, these are not little things in the eyes of God.

Those living the abundant life strive to be as good as their word. They know that God keeps His word with us, and God wants us to keep our word with others. 


…I have come that they may have life and that they

may have it more abundantly.” ~John 10:10 (KJV)

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