In Romans 6:16, the Bible says that "to whom you yield yourself servant to obey, his servant ye are." Many Christians fail to realize that obedience is God's love language. If you are going to communicate to God that you love Him, it has to be communicated through what you do and not just what you say. Even Jesus said, "And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?" (Luke 4:46). I think for a lot of us what we call obedience is simply doing what we want to do and putting a label of obedience on it. But as has been said, a rose by any other name is still a rose. You can call it anything that you like, but one thing is for certain, God knows obedience. He is not necessarily looking at the outward appearance, as he said to Samuel, God looks at the heart. He looks at why you do what you do and not just what you do. So, I am convinced that for some of us that it takes a lifetime to learn how to obey God and to learn that obeying God is loving God.
In a parable that Jesus told about a father who had two sons that he asked to go to his fields and work, the older son said, "I go, sir", but he did not. In essence, he told his father what he wanted to hear, but he did not back it up with action. The second son said, "I will not" and afterwards he changed his mind and went. He said no to his father because that was how he really felt at the moment, but afterwards he repented and went to the field. Jesus asked the question to the Pharisees: "Whether of them twain did the will of his father?" (Matthew 21:28-31). The answer is obvious, the one who actually obeyed. Obeying God is critical to knowing the father's will.
In my years of pastoring, I have talked to hundreds and hundreds of people who have confessed to not knowing what the Will of God is for their life. In most cases, this stems out of a heart of disobedience. Somewhere in their lives they have failed to obey God. Perhaps, it may have been something small and seemed insignificant. Nothing is insignificant to God. From there the gap widens as you go out; what starts out as small, becomes wider as you go out several feet. The further you get away from and look at it from another angle, the wider the gap gets. Listen to what God said in the Old Testament: "Behold, the Lord 's hand is not shortened, that it cannot save;
neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God ,and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear" (Isaiah 59:1-9). If you are among the thousands of Christians who feel distant from God, it may be that you need to ask God to forgive you for being disobedient.
It is not enough to just start obeying God when you have been disobedient. The way to correct it is to repent and confess and then move forward in obedience.
Pastor Earl Goings shares his thoughts on everyday concerns.
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