The Power of a Creed
"He [God] has shown you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God."1
Creeds are principles by which to live. If we want to live worthwhile and purposeful lives, it pays to choose and believe in a worthwhile and purposeful creed. Many have been written by others. A well thought-out one was written by John D. Rockefeller, Jr. It is as follows:
"I believe in the supreme worth of the individual and in his right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness.
"I believe that every right implies a responsibility; every opportunity, an obligation; every possession, a duty.
"I believe that the law was made for man and not man for the law; that government is the servant of the people and not their master.
"I believe in the dignity of labor, whether with head or hand; that the world owes no man a living, but that it owes every man an opportunity to make a living.
"I believe that thrift is essential to well-ordered living and that economy is a prime requisite of a sound financial structure, whether in government, business, or personal affairs.
"I believe that truth and justice are fundamental to an enduring social order.
"I believe in the sacredness of a promise, that a man's word should be as good as his bond; that character—not wealth or power or position—is of supreme worth.
"I believe that the rendering of useful service is the common duty of mankind and that only in the purifying fire of sacrifice is the dross of selfishness consumed and the greatness of the human soul set free.
"I believe in an all-wise and all-loving God … and that the individual's highest fulfillment, greatest happiness, and widest usefulness are to be found in living in harmony with His will.
"I believe that love is the greatest thing in the world; that it alone can overcome hate; that right can and will triumph over might."
We would all do well to read this creed often and practice it all year long.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to live according to a sound creed, the principles of which are all in harmony with your Word and your will. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."
1. Micah 6:8 (NIV).