I Want to Obey…

By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. ” (1 John 5:2)

I want to obey, but…

Have you ever found yourself making excuses for not following Jesus’ words?  Have you ever said to yourself, “I would like to obey Him… I wish I could have a stronger faith… I wish I had more joy and peace in my life… I wish…”?  I have often found myself wondering, “why can’t I be a more loving person, or a happier person?”  I know that Jesus promised that those who would follow after Him would know peace and joy and abiding hope.  So why do I struggle so?

We could all come up with excuses for not knowing the life that Jesus calls us to.  We are very busy, overworked, overscheduled, overplayed.  We may not know enough about His word and will, or maybe we know too much, and we are left wondering what to do.

In The Cost of Discipleship, Dietrich Bonhoeffer addresses this chasm we face between believing in God and living like we believe in Him.  If we know what we believe, but we struggle with being obedient to His word, with being more loving, more faithful, filled with a servant’s heart, the solution is simple: “You are disobedient, you are trying to keep some part of your life under your own control.  That is what is preventing you from listening to Christ and believing in his grace.  You cannot hear Christ because you are willfully disobedient.  Somewhere in your heart you are refusing to listen to his call.  You difficulty is your sins… Only those who obey can believe, and only those who believe can obey.  In the name of Christ… obey, take action, take the first step.  Tear yourself away from all other attachments, and follow him.”

If you want to know Him, take up His word and read.  If you want to follow Him, obey.  If you want to be more loving, then start by loving those around you with the love He has shown you.  If you want more joy and peace in your life, then be filled with His joy and the peace that comes from His grace.  “Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will fulfill the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4).  Or as the old Hymn says, “Trust and obey, for there’s no other way, to be happy in Jesus, than to trust and obey.” 

By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. (1 John 5:2)

I want to obey, but…

Have you ever found yourself making excuses for not following Jesus’ words?  Have you ever said to yourself, “I would like to obey Him… I wish I could have a stronger faith… I wish I had more joy and peace in my life… I wish…”?  I have often found myself wondering, “why can’t I be a more loving person, or a happier person?”  I know that Jesus promised that those who would follow after Him would know peace and joy and abiding hope.  So why do I struggle so?

We could all come up with excuses for not knowing the life that Jesus calls us to.  We are very busy, overworked, overscheduled, overplayed.  We may not know enough about His word and will, or maybe we know too much, and we are left wondering what to do.

In The Cost of Discipleship, Dietrich Bonhoeffer addresses this chasm we face between believing in God and living like we believe in Him.  If we know what we believe, but we struggle with being obedient to His word, with being more loving, more faithful, filled with a servant’s heart, the solution is simple: “You are disobedient, you are trying to keep some part of your life under your own control.  That is what is preventing you from listening to Christ and believing in his grace.  You cannot hear Christ because you are willfully disobedient.  Somewhere in your heart you are refusing to listen to his call.  You difficulty is your sins… Only those who obey can believe, and only those who believe can obey.  In the name of Christ… obey, take action, take the first step.  Tear yourself away from all other attachments, and follow him.”

If you want to know Him, take up His word and read.  If you want to follow Him, obey.  If you want to be more loving, then start by loving those around you with the love He has shown you.  If you want more joy and peace in your life, then be filled with His joy and the peace that comes from His grace.  “Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will fulfill the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4).  Or as the old Hymn says, “Trust and obey, for there’s no other way, to be happy in Jesus, than to trust and obey.”

SDG

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About reveds

Occupation: Pastor, Ebenezer Presbyterian Church, Lennox, SD Education: BS - Christian Education, Sterling College; MDiv. - Princeton Theological Seminary Family: Married, with Four children. Hobbies: Running (will someday run a marathon), Sci-Fi (especially Doctor Who and Sherlock), Theater, and anything else my kids will let me do.
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