Tuesday, August 28, 2007



When we hear that word we immediately think of our parents or school don't we? When we were growing up we were told what to do and where to go.

For our own benefit.


Because they knew better than we did what we needed to know or what was best for us.

Hold on. Here's that line again.

Because they knew better than we did what we needed to know or what was best for us.

Doesn't that remind you of someone else?

Of course it does. Well, it should.

God's like that too.

He knows whats best for us. He knows the best way to live. He knows who we are, what we're gifted at, what we're passionate about, where our weaknesses are and where & when we need healing, restoration or discipline.

He knows this because he made us.

When a person makes a model toy, or a model railway, they know exactly what its like, what it needs and all the little things that others don't see or don't notice. Parents are the same with their children.

That's how God knows us all better than anyone else. He made us and we're his children.

The commandments, teachings and lessons of the Bible are there to help us, to guide us, to direct and advise us. They are an example of that.

The Bible is not a handbook to life - how many handbooks do people actually read? That's a poor analogy.

No, the Bible is how to live. Its how God wants us to be.

Its not something we only refer to when we are struggling or don't understand. That's what a handbook does.

Its more than that.

God shows us in the Bible how to live a Christian life, He shows us examples. He shows it through the glories and mistakes and lives of people in the Old Testament, and perfectly through Jesus in the New Testament.

We should follow those examples.

Learn from the example of people in the Old Testament and from their mistakes.

Like David. He was obedient to God and was blessed - then got so caught up in himself and his power that he abused it, by sleeping with Bathsheba and getting her husband put on the front line to be killed. His life was never as glorious or blessed as it was. His family suffered. Why? Because he wasn't obedient.

Solomon took 20 years to build the temple and the palace alongside it, it cost a fortune. But he did it. Becuase he was obedient. When it was done, the first thing he does is glorify God and offer it up to God, giving him the glory.

Jesus is a perfect example of obedeince. He didn't make mistakes, He lived out what God wants us to be. He was obedient. When his best friend Lazarus was sick, instead of going straightaway to heal him and save him from death, he waited. This meant allowing his friend Lazarus to die, so that Jesus could raise him from the dead, which glorifyied God more than just healing would have done, and marked Him out as different from any other preachers around.

It showed He was who He said He was. It happened becuase He was obedient.

Jesus was obedient all the time. Even when it meant His own suffering, pain, degredation, humiliation, seperation from God and ultimately death. When He says "Not my will, but yours be done" in Gesthemane, it has power becuase Jesus is overcoming His own will and submitting to the Fathers, for our sake.

Amazing love.

Perfect obedience.

Perfect example for us.

So, what do we do now? How can we be obedient?

We need to listen to what He's telling us. Sounds obvious, but so often we don't do that. We make assumptions about what He's saying, rather than just listening and asking.

If we don't know what God is saying to us and we don't know what He's calling us or asking us to do, then we can't be obedient can we? So we need to listen. We need to be willing to go and do whatever He asks of us.

We need to listen with the fear of the Lord.

Where and through whom does he speak?

The Bible, of course, as I've shown. He speaks powerfully thorough the Bible.

But He speaks in other ways too. He speaks in the quiet places, our intimate times with him.

He speaks through circumstances. He speaks through friends, enemies and people we've never met before.

He'll use any way possible to get our attention. We need to be open and aware and have our Spiritual ears open. We need to listen.

The point is, that we need to study the word, spend time listening to God, learn the lessons and be obedient to what He is saying to us.

God's not a schoolteacher though. He is gentle, kind, loving and won't force Himself of us. But, He will keep nagging at His telling us what He really wants for us. His call is inevitable and compelling - just look at Jonah.

Not only that, its for our good, the good of others and the glory of God. Wow.

Of course, being human and inperfect, we muck up occasionally. We are disobedient to God's teachings and to His call. It happens. No matter what we do or our intentions, at some point we will muck it up.

But its not a big problem.

God still loves us. God still wants us as part of His kingdom. He still wants us to serve Him just as much as before.

We can repent of our disobedience, whether its disobedience to His word or disobedience to His call and wishes for our lives.

We can be forgiven. Then its forgotten.

After that, we then have to go back and start being obedient, learn from our mistakes. Without fear. If we go off course again, God can get us back on track.

I admit that sometimes I fail in this. We all do. But the great thing is God is always there helping and guiding us, and if we truly want to be odedient then He will enable us to do that.

He beleives in us.

He loves us.

He's always with us.

If we want to be like Jesus, we need to learn obedience.

Obedience even if we don't understand it fully.

Obedience even if its difficult.

Becuase being obedient is the right thing to do. Its in our best interests. God knows whats best for us, thats why he asks, commands, and shows us how we should attain that and how He wants us to live. Its for our own good.

From a loving, gentle, caring, humble Father who is by our side, with us all the time.

Live in His will, and He will be faithful.

Our lives will be so much better.

Don't just take my word for it though. Take His.

Then do it.