Saturday, June 19

Obeying God

What does it mean to Obey God? The dictionary definition tells us, "to comply with or follow the commands, restrictions, wishes, or instructions of." So, to obey God is to follow his commandments - not just the Ten Commandments, but the Commandments given by Jesus as well. (See past entry, The Commandments of Jesus)

Why obey God? Some do not want to obey God because of circumstances in their lives. Sometimes, God arranges the circumstances to keep harm out of your life - but as Christians, we all suffer trials and tribulations, we all face hardships.
God has given us the Bible. His commandments steer us away from unnecessary pain, and into life.

John 10:10 says, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." If you trust God, trust that he knows what is best, and will follow his commandments, you are obeying God, and will live your life to the fullest.
Does obeying God ever get easy? Let me give an example. If children follow their parents merely because they do not want to be grounded, then the child will always struggle with obeying. It is the same way with obeying God.

He is our Eterna
l Father, and you will obey him when you trust him above all else. Does that happen all at once? Of course not. But to get to that point, you need to choose the "way of truth."

What next? Tell God you want to follow him, follow his ways. You walk by faith, not by sight. You read his word, the Bible, not only to learn more so that you may spread his word, but also to remind yourself what he has done for you. (Image taken from Gospel of John, starring Henry Ian Cusick)

Romans 10:17 says, "Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ." By reading his word, we are hearing the message, and are reminded of what he did for us.
If you stick to it, everyday, you will see how God remains faithful, even in the hard times. You trust him more and more, he "increases your understanding." (1st Kings 4:29)

By doing this, by trusting him, you begin to WANT to follow him, not just follow as duty. We are not human doings - we are human begins. Yes, he wants us to obey his commandments and follow him.
But he also wants us to trust him, to read the Word daily, you increase in understanding and spread his message, he wants us to obey, but by obeying, we should WANT to obey. The only way to do that is to put your Trust in him.

A Christian writer, Kevin Johnson, wrote this next passage. "What does Jesus want most from you? Jesus has a situation on his hands. A crowd of five thousand men - plus women and children - swarms toward him and his disciples. Jesus sees it's time to eat. And time for a pop quiz: 'Where's lunch coming from?' Jesus asks. 'For the whole hillside!' he adds. But he's not wondering where he can find the nearest Taco Tom's or looking for volunteers to cough up a spare year of salary. What he really wants is to know what the disciples think about him."

Johnson continues, "None of Jesus' disciples answer the quiz question right. Philip mumbles about the price. Andrew finds a kid toting what he regards as a useless little snack of fish and chips. The disciples all think Jesus means the lunch problem is their problem. To solve. To survive. And on their own they don't see solutions. All Jesus wants them to do is to ask for help. 'Crack the bread in half, Jesus,' he wants them to say. 'Start passing it around. You're able to do what we can't.' What he wants from his disciples - from his followers back then and from us now - is trust. It wasn't supposed to be a trick question. It was a trust question." (Kevin Johnson, Total Devotion, ©2004)

Jesus wants us to trust him. He wants us to ask for his help. Bu trusting him, we learn to want his help, and by wanting his help, we seek to obey him and follow his commands. Happy Father's Day, and if you do not have a good history with your Earthly Father, remember that your Heavenly Father is always loving.

Troy Hillman

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