Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Obedience - A Pathway to Joy ~ by Amy Vest

I don't often do this.  I don't often sit down with nothing on my heart to write about.  Usually there is something the Lord puts on my heart and gives me to write about. He causes the words to flow into my heart and out my fingers into words - and I pray He anoints them and uses them by His Spirit in hearts.

Today is different.

I have nothing specific to write.  But I feel Him beckoning me to write a blog post.  And so I am.

As I type, I realize that this is exactly what I am supposed to write about.  Obedience.  As I type that word - that word that can hold so many reactions - I know, this is what I am supposed to write on.  This is something He has been teaching me in a real, practical, moment-by-moment way lately.

Obedience to Jesus is something we never move beyond, only deeper into.

Obedience to Jesus shows that I believe Him, that I trust Him, that I love Him - obedience is outwardly witnessing that He is my Lord.

When I don't obey, I am really saying that I believe that what I think is good for me is better than what Jesus thinks is good for me. {Ouch, that hurts - but, it is true!}

Disobedience to Jesus is sin, proof of pride, foolish, and leads us in the wrong direction.

When I obey - even when I don't understand - I am saying that I believe Jesus is wise, good, loving, that His plan, ways, and heart is perfect, and that He will always keep His promises. 

Obedience to Jesus brings joy to His heart - and mine, is evidence of freeing humility in my life, and leads us to His best for us.

Obedience is proof that I love Jesus - and that I believe He loves me.

Jesus says it: “If you love me, you will keep my commandments." John 14:15

"And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands." 2 John 1:6

When we obey Him - what He calls us to do in His Word, the Bible, and what He leads us to do in moment-by-moment life in line with His Word - it brings us closer to Him.  When I listen to His voice and follow in obedience, I know more of His heart and am led in His path for me.  I want that - don't you?  But, when I disobey, I harden my heart and it hinders my closeness with Jesus.  Oh friend, we don't want that!

It is a daily, moment-by-moment choice.   It takes place in a million different ways each day - in answering His call to meet with Him in His Word, to speaking with love, to being honest in your work, to _________ - you can fill in the blank.  Each choice leads us either deeper with Jesus and His path for us, or hinders our relationship with Him and His work through us.

Here's the thing.  We cannot obey in our own strength.  Everything the Lord calls us to, He gives us the grace to do, and everything He calls us to do is impossible apart from Him - beautifully designed to cause us to rely on and come to greater depths with Jesus Who walks with us every step of the way.  It is saying, "Jesus, please help me obey You." and stepping out in faith, believing He always will!

And for the times we disobey, Jesus stands ready with open arms for us to turn from going our own way and run into His arms to walk with and obey Him afresh.

The path of obedience to Jesus is a doorway to greater joy - because it is a doorway to more of Jesus and His best for you.

Let's answer Him with a joyful, "Yes, Lord!" from a heart overflowing with love!

Friend, I imagine your heart is echoing this prayer with mine:

"I want to obey You, Jesus.  I want to want to obey You, Jesus.  I want to sit at Your feet, know You more, soak in Your Word, and to beg for and allow You to change my heart so that out will spill love that will motivate obedience to You.  I want to obey even when my feelings are leading me to do something else - because I know that You love and know what is best for me far more than my feelings do! I am asking You afresh for grace in this moment to obey You!  In Your Name, Amen."

What is Jesus calling you to obey Him in today?

Right now He is calling me to obey and go help prepare dinner.  I'll see you later! :)

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