Wednesday, September 8, 2010
I know that this verse recounts the glory of the fabulous faith of Abraham but I have found it my goal and prayer that this verse could also be said about me when I am old and gray. For effectiveness sake, I have included my name right next to Abe's (feel free to plug your little name in there too!) as verses 24 promises that the same goes for us if we dare to outrageously believe God. I am in. You?
“Abraham never wavered in believing God's promises. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. He was absolutely convinced that God was able to anything he promised. And because of Abraham's faith, God declared him to be righteous.”
The “Yes and AMEN to that!” Version...
“[Jenna] never wavered in believing God's promises. In fact, [her] faith grew stronger, and in this [she] brought glory to God. [She] was absolutely convinced that God was able to anything he promised. And because of [Jenna's] faith, God declared [her] to be righteous.”
Friday, September 3, 2010
Living in a house with a 2 ½ year old lends itself quite easily to repeated lessons on the topic of obedience. It is a fact that on any given you day you will undoubtedly hear the words, “Joshua, listen and OBEY,” uttered with forced-patience from the lips of his Mom, Dad, or me, his Auntie. I am finding that obedience sometimes is a funny thing. From the youngest age so many of us form ideas on this slippery little word that relates the action with either reward or punishment. Sadly, obedience tends to become associated with being forced to submit and do the things that we do not want to do.
The thing is that God didn't create obedience that way.
This morning while reading the somewhat dismal judgments on the rebellion of God's people in the book of Ezekiel, I found this little verse (actually repeated twice so you know it HAS to be important!) that popped out at me and shown a pretty little light on obedience.
“...They [The Israelites] wouldn't obey my instructions even though obedience would have given them life.”
Let this truth of God's Word settle a bit in your spirit...Obedience gives LIFE. I can tell you there is this unspeakable joy, peace, and richness to a life lived in obedience to the will of God. It is not a life lived in numb, mindless obedience but rather a life fully alert to God's very best and willing to jump right in. I have gone through seasons where obedience was not fun and was for sure a choice of my will, but the more I allow the Holy Spirit to work in my life this remarkable thing happens...I actually become delighted to obey the Lord. Yep, it is totally true.
As I thought over this alternative perspective on obedience before the Lord this morning, I felt my heart begin to ask some thrilling questions they may challenge the way you view obedience too.
What if the things God is asking us to do in obedience were actually the very things we desired to do most? ...Then obedience would be easy and delightful.
What if we viewed obedience as a way to express our love for a God who has done more then we can fathom? ...Then obedience would be intimate.
What if I allowed my heart to be so tuned to the Spirit of God that it was easy for me to hear and know what God would ask of me? ...Then obedience would give purpose.
What if we just simply trusted that God is for us and obeyed Him?
...Then we would find this life God speaks of.
Obedience will always be a matter of the heart.
I so desperately desire my heart to be in step with all the marvelous plans of my God for me that obedience is no longer a duty but a pleasure. For obedience truly is bliss.