February 22, 2012

Ham & Eggs

A chicken and a pig were walking down the road together. They passed a sign for a local diner advertising its breakfast special: “Ham and Eggs – $2.95!” The chicken said, “That’s our whole contribution to society: breakfast food!” The pig replied, “For you, it may be a contribution. For me it’s a total commitment.”

The chicken in this story get’s by with laying eggs, yet for ham to be on the menu the pig has to die. The chicken gives a little, while the pig gives all he has. And as strange as it may seem this is the case surrounding relationships in our culture. For contrary to popular belief, a relationship with God requires more than a contribution. It requires a total commitment; as does your relationship with your spouse, children and closest friends. The problem is people refuse to devote themselves entirely to those who matter in their life, and as a result they become frustrated when the relationship never becomes all they had hope it would be. Let’s face it; our culture is full of chickens – individuals who settle for making small contributions all because commitment requires some extra effort. Or perhaps they’re just plain scared to do so. And as commitment depreciates within our culture, many are left with relationships that lack any sort of value.

Personally I don’t believe this should come as groundbreaking news. You’re commitment determines the type of relationship you will end up with. And as commitment goes, so does the relationship. Affairs lead to divorces. Neglected children are forced to become adults before teenagers, while developing hatred towards their parents. All while the friendships in our lives come and go with the click of a button on Facebook. People constantly find themselves back at square one. It’s as if society has turned a deaf ear to the old adage, “if you don’t want to start over again, stop giving up.” Besides giving up is the easy part. It’s living with your decision that will haunt you down the road. Don’t believe me? Just ask the parent who missed seeing their kids grow up, or the husband who traded in 15 years of marriage for a date with his secretary. There’s no question, bailing on your commitment will destroy those close to you, but it will also leave you just as miserable.

I think the story of the chicken and the pig is amusing, but not for obvious reasons. What’s funny to me is the chicken seems to be more upset about the situation than the pig. In the same way, those who make minimal contributions will always be displeased with the results they produce. On the contrary, it’s commitment that produces success and value within a relationship, while a lack of devotion forfeits a relationship’s significance.

Don’t just make a contribution. Make a commitment. And in all things, commit to the Lord whatever you do and you will succeed - Proverbs 16:3.