Commitment and leadership skills go hand-in-hand.  If a leader is expected to be trusted by his/her followers, there must be a strong commitment which is lived out by that leader daily.

You cannot get by with the old saying, “Do as I say, not as I do!”  In this world of social media and the new “freedom of speech,” which covers people who choose to deceive others or to chastise those with whom they disagree, it would be suicide to make that stand.

    I’ve watched many businesses over the years come and go quite quickly.  Many times, it was because they could not or did not carry out their commitments to their clientele.  Such businesses may have been a great idea, but there was insufficient funding or a lack of knowledge about running a business.  Dedication and commitment are sometimes the only shoestrings that hold such an endeavor together.

    I often wonder how our future society will be, considering that these young people have watched a lack of commitment each and every day by their families, friends, politicians, and adults entrusted with their safety and well-being.  I am astounded at the number of arrests and trials taking place all over our nation with teachers, coaches, religious leaders, and parents who have been found guilty of abusing children in their care.

    Perhaps we need to take up the practice by many of “renewing our vows” as married couples have done.  What would happen to our daily lives if we made a new commitment to our employers, employees, friends, family members, children, and even to our God?  I think if such a move would bring about certain change, then perhaps we aren’t fully committed now.  We are the only one who can judge our levels of commitment accurately.  

    I’ve written two statements on the top of my marker board in my classroom.  They came to my mind as I was preparing for our five-year accreditation review visit.  They are as follows: 

Every moment of the day is a teaching opportunity.  Every moment of the day is a learning moment.

    Just writing down those two thoughts where I see them every day has caused me to find a new level of commitment to my students.  I especially prayed about and asked for a super-hero amount of patience and dedication in dealing with my students who aren’t that interested in putting forth the effort necessary to meet the LAAS standards of learning.  So far, I’ve seen God answer my prayers in exciting new ways.  Success is becoming a part of their learning each day.  And needless to say, with each advancement by these students, I find new energy and a new level of commitment to and for them.

    Where did I get the idea to pray for such a commitment?  Simple: read the Bible in John the 17th chapter.  Jesus prayed for his disciples and all those who would follow Him in the future.  He committed Himself to them and to all of us making up future generations.  He made a commitment and verified it with God.  God gave Him the strength to carry it out.  So, instead of becoming discouraged or giving up, I recommitted myself as a teacher to those who are a little harder to reach and teach.