I have always wondered why having lots of money didn’t mean much to me. I know it meant much to those around me. And, it was something that was good to have when I needed to take care of a bill. But, the greater part of my thoughts were always directed to what could be done for others.

I heard a phrase not too long ago that seemed more like an admonition; “Treat gold like stone.”

In the film industry, there are many who profess their ability to produce solid entertainment through the amount of money they spend on the process. So, how come we have so many fantastic films of yesteryear that have been made on nearly no budget? How come the stars we remember most are those that started out in films that could have been made in someone’s back yard, or basement?

If gold is to be treated like stone, then it stands to reason that every rock you possess could itself be ‘gold’ in disguise. Isn’t that so?

What does that have to do with promises?

promisesEvery day we are told that promises mean nothing. That there is reasoning which overcomes any promise. In fact, I would call them excuses. We can excuse a variety of the ten or so commandments we choose not to follow. We can admit our flaws and bear them like badges of courage to excuse bad behavior; and, we can turn a blind eye to those that have been irreparably harmed – all in the name of what we term, ‘a good reason.’

Then who are we. The sum of a man’s character is left to speculative ridicule. If one can so easily shirk off responsibilities, then tout the fact that promises mean nothing, then what is the value of that man’s character? What is the point of living an ‘honorable life.’

I was married to a woman who was told by her friends I had never been in a movie. She had harbored that false ‘reality’ in her mind until she was able to replace it with another thought. That thought came after coming to the set on her first occasion and realizing just how much waiting around we do before shooting. Her change in reality was summed up by stating: “You really don’t do anything. You get paid to sit around most of the time and then speak a couple of lines.” The result was the same… reality replaced the word, ‘never,’ with – ‘you don’t do anything.”

Another man ventured that my martial arts training was a fraud. Yet he was with me from 1st Degree to 6th Degree. I paid for most of his certifications and testing fees. He would not have received his 7th Degree without my training him prior. When he ventured to speak to our seniors about this, he was rebuffed. Then started calling himself an 8th Degree. Claiming to have trained with a man for 20 years, when all he did was test a little over 5 years ago and went on his way. It seems we can reason anything.

If we each take a look at our lives, we can find a myriad of items that need correcting. I have much aggravation that comes from the court proceedings that I have written about. The lies of those who claim to present the truth. Those who worked for me only to line their own pockets. Including a man that wondered who paid off his student loans when he graduated from college. Only to make up a series of tall tales to insulate himself from corrupt acts.

Such begs to question even more whether it would be easier to abandon promises – or leave them in place.

What would the value be to find a man who spent his entire life just keeping the promises he made? Even if it took to his dying day to accomplish that task. We often read stories of people who overcome all odds to do just that. We extoll the virtues of those who are long-suffering, and hold eternal love. Yet, one woman told me; “I could never do that. I could never be with someone who had lost their mind, had an incurable illness, or suffered countess tragedies.” Such is the world that we call “home.”

In these hours when life confronts us – head on, we must seek the resolve to face a higher calling. There is a song, and video by country singer Carrie Underwood called; “Temporary Home.” If you have a moment take a look at the video on You-Tube (http://youtu.be/LraOiHUltak). Better yet, purchase the video so you can remind yourself of the more important things life has to offer.

Now, it is time to step back and look at our lives. Is a certain television show, sports event, vacation, or schooling impeding your ability to keep promises? Even small ones? Are the things you find important in life the same as those you spend your time with? And, are the people with which you surround yourself focused on the same goals and objectives that you have set for yourself?

In another post, I stated; “…those who truly know you, truly love you, will know the truth of your words and actions.” Those who have their minds buried up in self-centered aggrandizement will never come to know that truth.

In this, you are secure: Live your life humbly, and in satisfaction of your principles. In the end, no one else will care… As for me, there was a woman I knew since the age of 16. She read, and listened to all that others professed of me. Then read some more. She decided that what was extolled by others could never be true. Then she reached out.

My temporary home is now so much more. She gets me. In all my faults and strengths, she remains. And, she doesn’t mind that I yet have promises to fulfill – even if others will never keep those made to me. Perhaps, from time to time, we just need a gentle reminder of the true value of a promise made.

Truth be told, I was her very first date. She gets me. I get her. Promise keeping is not a religious connotation. It is a way of life – for those who are willing. For those who still believe in ‘magic,’ it is the reason people flock to see those in film and the written word demonstrate a higher character. Character that is reflected in how they wish they could live their own lives.

If then a certain ‘virtue’ is found in the honorable keeping of a promise, let us think twice before condemning, or laughing, at those who truly seek to claim it. Then support that decision by abiding its example. See how it makes you feel.