Do you always obey?
Isaiah 1:19, 20 If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land; but if you refuse and rebel you shall be devoured by the sword; for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.
1 Peter 1:13,14 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ, as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance.
Do you hesitate to do what you feel God is telling you to do? I have made so many impetuous mistakes during my lifetime, that now I question and double check when I am unsure of what I’m being told. Sometimes I wonder if I’ve heard correctly. But this doubt, this uncertainty that what I believe I’ve been told might actually be my own wishes and not the path God is leading me to follow, makes me . . . wait.
So I hesitate. I question. I doubt. Yet that is actually disobedience. I do not want to be disobedient. Yet, that is what my doubting and questioning is when I continue to test. If I don’t do as told right away, then that is disobedience. There is no place in Genesis 22 that says Abraham asked God if He was sure, how He could ask someone to kill their only child? There is nothing that says Abraham delayed, he just packed wood on the donkeys, and took his supplies and knife and prepared to sacrifice his son. He obeyed, apparently, without question or hesitation. But questioning, bargaining, trying to form a different deal, running, delaying is disobedience. I was disobedient . . . a lot.
Over the years I have jumped into decisions that sounded good, enticing and held an allure that seemed attractive at the time. I did not always ask for His input, I just made my own choices. Usually, the cost was more than I expected. It took several times doing these impromptu jumps before I realized I needed to talk with God and get His opinion. FIRST, BEFORE I acted.
It seems odd to me, that I was 19 when I accepted Jesus’ invite, but I was about 30 before I started learning about Him. I didn’t realize I had to exert any effort in getting to know Him—I assumed it was just carry on with life the way I always had. My walk has been a lot longer than many of my friends. My guess is that part of my educational delay was because I am shy and do not easily explore new places and people. How much that has cost over the years.
I had never read the bible until I was in my 30’s and even then it was at times difficult to understand. It took branching out and meeting new people, shoving the nerves aside and going to bible studies and meeting people who know far more than me, and taking advantage of volunteer opportunities. I began learning. Yes, learning stories of the biblical characters, but more importantly, learning God, learning Jesus, and the Holy Spirit.
Doors in my mind opened, and understanding seeped into my brain. Oh, I had so much to learn, to suck deep into my being. I had so much to confess, to change and grow. At times it felt overwhelming. I had to learn I would never be ‘good enough’ and that He accepted me where I was and wanted me to grow from there. I had to work with my idea and view of who I was and wondered often how could He possibly accept ME? Me? But by reading, listening, studying, and seeking, I came to understand that He accepts and loves me where I am. It took a while to get to that point.
I needed to get rid of the shame. It was not enough for me to confess sins and leave them. I continued to pick them up and wind and unwind them to just fret over them. There was no believing with all my mess I could ever be forgiven. Again, that is in itself shameful. By doing that I am indicating that His horrific death and sacrifice for me, was not enough. Have I not learned about grace, His grace?
Finally, over time, it came to me that my worrying and fretting over sins I’d confessed and handed over to Him, it was now sinful to continue holding onto them and berating myself for all my errors and sins. He forgave me. It should be done. He has forgiven me, and yet, with my doubt and (shame, and selfish holding on to things), here I was doubting and therefore sinning. Who am I to doubt and negate what God has said? He said He forgave me.
Ahh, it was the demon himself who constantly and consistently whispered the lies of not being forgivable, being too bad and sinful to be EVER be forgiven. And I believed it. Believed the lies. Why is it easier for me to believe his lies rather than God’s truths?
I am so thankful I finally started on the path of learning who He is, and what He truly expects for me and my behavior. Changing my sinful, selfish self-centered ways is what I truly desire. It is a lifelong process. At times I feel like I’ve climbing a mountain, and after a bit can stop and rest and look down into the valley—and now can see I’ve climbed a ways up; looking upwards I see a long way to g, but there is a pleasure in knowing I have climbed and come a ways from the place I was. There’s a distance to go, but I’m moving forward.
Thank You, Lord, for Your Words which guide and teach me. Thank You for Your patience in my growth, and for all You have done for me and ‘mybellaviews.’