Saturday, October 4, 2014

Obey with Eyes Wide Open

One of the hardest things for a parent to teach a child is to obey.  I remember trying to teach my 2-year-old and 3-year-old how to obey the boundaries I'd set for them in riding their hot cycles.  Children that age just don't understand why they can't ride their hot cycles in the street.  They have no concept of a car racing down the road and endangering their lives.  I went outside with them many times and showed them again and again where the boundaries were.  They knew they could ride on our driveway and to the end of the sidewalk.  But they couldn't go on the neighbor's driveway, for fear their car might back out and not see them.  I'd stay on the porch while they played...and watch. They would ride up to the boundary and stop and look at it.

Matt (3) & Amy (2)

They would ride as fast as they could back to the driveway and do it over and over.  There were times I'd have to yell, "STOP!" and hope for immediate obedience so they wouldn't get hurt.  This went on for many days.  Finally, one day, I stepped inside the house and watched out the window...just to see if they'd obey if I wasn't there.  Matt rode up to the neighbor's driveway, looked back at our house, and poked his foot over the boundary.  I chuckled, but I had to go outside and discipline him.  I needed him to understand that boundaries were boundaries.  And he needed to obey to stay safe.

I think we're going to face days in our future where we need to give strict attention to what the Father says to us.  We need to be quick to obey.  Jesus said, "But so the world might know how thoroughly I love the Father, I am carrying out my Father's instructions right down to the last detail."  (John 14:31)  He came to do everything his Father wanted him to do.  He had to listen...and then obey.  And just like Jesus didn't fear, we shouldn't fear.  

God has put us right where we are in these days for His purposes.  He has a good plan to fulfill through us.  I encourage you to read about how--and in how many ways--Jesus obeyed his Father in Matthew, Mark, Luke & John.  I was reading about his first miracle (turning water into wine) this morning in John 2.  (I love that his mom was encouraging him to help out the wedding couple.  How did she know it was time to start his ministry?  Or did she?)  He obeyed by doing miracles, confronting religious leaders, discipling, being in specific places at specific times, etc.  He knew what his ultimate mission was going to die for our sins.  And he was obedient even unto death. (Philippians 2:8)

Obedience sometimes costs us.  But oh!  How much better to obey than disobey.  And even better when we obey quickly.  And when we know what God wants us to do or where to be, it helps alleviate fear.

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