by Dianne Dougharty

Avoiding the easy way out

Shortly after I received my new cell phone our grandson wanted to set my ringtones. He had fun finding the most unusual options available. So I often hear ding ding, ping ping or pop pop! As I was scurrying around to get ready for an event that I was to attend, I received a text from another lady who was to be there. Pop! Pop! I glanced down to read the message only to find out that she was not coming. Those hosting were uncertain of this person’s attendance and had set a place at the table and prepared enough food. Now I, like this lady, have been guilty on occasion of taking the easy way out of commitments—texting!

Did you know that RSVP means reply please? In other words, we are to have the courtesy to let the host or hostess know if we will be attending. And if we say that we will be attending—we are to ATTEND!

Cell phones make it too easy to shirk our responsibility or follow through with our commitments. Many times if we had to tell the person face to face or call and actually talk with them, we would just opt to go! But because we can text and do not have to face a person or our responsibility, we back out. 

I was thinking about this whole texting thing and wondering how it would have played out in Biblical times. Let’s take Abraham for instance. God invited Abraham to go on a trip and told him that He would take care of all the details. God even promised him that if he would go, He would take care of Abraham’s family for generations to come. Abraham agreed to go. But as the day was nearing for him to pack up all his belongings, load the camels, and place Sarah on the donkey, he decided he’d rather not go. After all, he was comfortable in his home and traveling had never really been his thing.  So Abraham sent a text to God with the following: “Hey God, I’ve decided that this trip is really not for me. It’s going to take too long and it’s really too far! Besides, Sarah and I love where we live. We’re settled in here and really don’t want to uproot, so we’re not going. I’m sure You understand and I am certain that You will find someone else who’s willing to go. It’s just not going to be us. Sorry!”

What about Mary of Nazareth? God sent Gabriel, his archangel, to inform Mary of the special assignment God had for her. He had chosen her out of all the women on the earth to carry His one and only Son. God invited Mary to be a part of His divine plan for all mankind. She was to play a vital role in His story. But the day after Gabriel’s visit, Mary decided that she had too much going on to play the part God had for her. After all, there were all the wedding details to attend to and getting the apartment set up. So, in light of that, she text Gabriel the following: “Hey Gab! I was thinking about what God wants me to do and I just don’t think I have time. I’m overwhelmed with wedding details and getting our new apartment set up. I realize this is an honor but I truly feel I just can’t commit to this right now. I’m certain that among all the young women in the world God will be able to find one who is not as busy as I am. Thanks anyway.”

Silly, huh? Aren’t we glad that Abraham and Mary didn’t take the easy way out and text God with their excuses as to why they couldn’t fulfill their God-given responsibility? Because Abraham was willing to do what he had been asked, there is a nation of Israel today. Because Mary was willing to do what she had been asked, you and I have a Savior.

Perhaps this coming year we need to lay aside our cell phones, give our thumbs a rest, and follow through with our commitments. Less texting! Less excuses! Let’s be women of our word and women who refuse to take the easy way out—texting!

“Say just a simple ‘Yes, I will’ or ‘No.” Matthew 5:37a (TLB)

Dianne Dougharty


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