My Dear Friends,
How often do you find yourself at a fork in the road? When you are torn between two things, town between decisions you must make, friends you must confront, or situations that you cannot be avoided? There are many times when our ways seem to be the right decisions, that somehow my way would be better than God’s. While I may not have outrightly said that, my actions still very well exhibit it. No matter how much our decision might have “seemed right” at the point, the outcome of disobedience never yields good fruit.
The result of disobedience is not reward, rather it always is always accompanied with hard consequences. We must not lose faith, however. God always has a reason for asking certain things, and His ways are always best. As Isaiah 55:8 says, “‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,’ saith the LORD.”
God always has a reason for asking.
As humans we are always trying to justify how our course of action is better than God’s; just like we all do when we are trying to find some way out of obedience. His way might appear too hard or too complicated but here is where the problem lies. Every one of these things is a focus on ourselves rather than God. I know better, I can figure it out on my own.
This is where a true heart of obedience doesn’t look for excuses. Rather, its disposition is: No matter how difficult it is, no matter how little sense it makes to me, I will do anything You ask of me because I love You and I know You do as well. We must never forget that God sees the whole picture. This is not just in our lives, but in the lives of every person who has ever lived, is living, or will ever live. In contrast to God’s Omnipotence, we see only the teeny tiniest fraction of what is happening in the here and now. When we look back through history, we can certainly see countless evidences that there is nothing outside of His control. We must never forget that despite the innumerable sins committed and all of the tragedies, deaths, and disasters, God still displays His love, faithfulness, grace, and sovereignty, and works “all things together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose” (Rom. 8:28).
Remember that no matter what our obedience might cost us, it is nothing compared to the prize that awaits us in eternity. When we choose to disobey, we are depriving ourselves of something that could be an incredible testimony that displays God’s sovereignty and glory. Who is our ultimate example of obedience? Christ. Hebrews 5:8-9 says, “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered. And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.” Nevertheless, Jesus’ obedience to His Father was not easy. Going to the Cross was most certainly the most painful, difficult, humiliating, and humbling experience anyone has ever had to endure. Jesus, the only perfect person who has ever lived, literally became sin for us and died in our place. Because of that obedience, He paid the debt for our freedom from sin and death.
“Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him. and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth: And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:9-11).
So, how can we live by biblical obedience in our lives? 1 John 5:2 says it, “By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.” When we grow in our love for Him is by spending time with Him in His Word and in prayer our obedience to Him will not become a duty, rather it will be a delight! Grow also in your dependance in Him. Remember that living in full obedience to Christ our Savior is impossible in our own strength. We have to trust Him for the moment-by-moment grace that enables us to do what He asks of us.
“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me” (2 Corinthians 12:9).
My friends, it is my prayer that if God is asking you to do something, don’t struggle with the decisions, simply submit to Him. Don’t depend on your feelings. I get it, it is hard not depending on feelings, but if you simply obey God He will give you the grace and the strength to do so. Living in obedience to Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior is always worth it. The joy that is beyond the grave is beyond compare to anything of this world even if it means forfeiting our lives. He is enough because we get Him. Please remember that living for His glory is the highest honor we could ever have. I will leave you with a quote from Elisabeth Elliot:
“God is God. Because He is God, He is worthy of my trust and obedience. I will find rest nowhere but in His holy will that is unspeakably beyond my largest notions of what He is up to.”
In Christ Always,