"You have my word"-This is a phrase we all have said and all have heard plenty of times; we use some version of it almost daily. Whether in casual conversations or in more serious discussions, we tell others that they can trust us with that simple phrase. But what are we actually giving someone when we give them our word? What does that mean for us?
Looking at one seemingly simple yet very significant pillar of Biblical masculinity, trustworthiness is a trait that seems to be disappearing in young men today. What is trust and why is it even important? Being trustworthy means that you are reliable and dependable no matter what the circumstances are around you. When someone has trust in you, they are confident in you; they know that they can rely and depend on your words and actions. A true man of Biblical standards must be trustworthy; it is a crucial building block. As we try to grow in this area, a great place to start is by giving value to your words.
Proverbs 29:20 says, "Do you see a man who is hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him." Oftentimes we devalue and hurt ourselves by just speaking too quickly; without giving it proper thought. When we are asked for a favor or are asked to do something we simply give them an answer just to satisfy them, hoping they forget because we never intended on doing it. I catch myself doing that pretty often. For example, when my wife asks me to go take care of certain small tasks, in an effort to please her, I automatically answer her and tell her that I will take care of it. In reality, I should have given thought to it and then given her a proper response. Now when the end of the day comes around, she expected me to take care of the tasks because I said I would, while I, on the other hand, had already forgotten about it because I did not think before I spoke. With multiple examples like this, over time, I can quickly bring the value of my words to ruin over simple things. This is a common example that can also be easily seen between friends, family, and co-workers. Once your words lose value, your level of trust will quickly follow.
How do we then grow the worth of our words? Consistency is the key; trust does not grow overnight. No matter if its the small tasks or the big favors, if we said we will do it, we need to go out and do it. As we prove our word to be good day in and day out, we will become more intentional and bring value to our words. Continuing over time, our words will carry weight, and with that comes respect. Building trust takes time and effort, yet its so easy to destroy it. There is no magic formula, it seems so simple, yet its very effective; let your words mean something.