Devotionals, Faith, Life, writings

Faithful Obedience


Luke 8:21 ESV—
“But he answered them, ‘My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.’”

So when I read this passage this morning, my mind immediately came to this thought: Lord, help me to hear your word and to do it.

My prayer was that the Holy Spirit would speak to me what God would have me do this day. But while I was praying, it was as if the Lord interrupted me. How many times do I ask what the Lord would have me to do? Was I asking for instructions on some grandiose scheme of God’s? Was I expecting God to answer with “You shall do such and such”?

But what a relationship is built on is consistent intimacy. Buying your spouse a gift on anniversaries and birthdays is not consistent intimacy. And neither is occasionally doing something big for God.  

Sometimes in moments of prayer, I’ll ask God for big things. I am, after all, a dreamer, a visionary, a big picture kind of guy. I want to see the BIG picture. Something that seems significant. Like, maybe God is going to direct me to do something awesome today for his glory. Maybe it means I’ll be instructed to begin a new project. Maybe it means I’ll be given supernatural insight into a problem.

But in that interruption, I felt God redirect me. The do-ing of God’s word need not be some large occasional thing. Jesus is talking about having a relationship with people. Not just a knowing of someone, but an intimacy that you would experience with close family. Just as a close familial relationship cannot be sustained by occasional large gestures, occasional large acts of obedience are not enough to sustain a relationship with Jesus.

But what a relationship is built on is consistent intimacy. Buying your spouse a gift on anniversaries and birthdays is not consistent intimacy. And neither is occasionally doing something big for God.  A relationship with Jesus is sustained by regular faithful obedience. By regularly listening to his word, seeking his voice, and obeying. Sure, sometimes it will be a big thing: a change in careers, a calling, a dramatic spiritual breakthrough. But it is in the consistent, often seemingly mundane, listening for his voice and obeying that we find a healthy relationship.

So today, after my prayer was interrupted, I clarified that if God wanted me to do something big, I was all ears. But more than that, I asked for the Lord to control my tongue. To help me to discern. To help me filter what kind of stuff I take into my mind and body. In other words, that the Lord would help me to consistently led by the Holy Spirit.

But what a relationship is built on is consistent intimacy. Buying your spouse a gift on anniversaries and birthdays is not consistent intimacy. And neither is occasionally doing something big for God.  

One thing that this quarantine and staying at home allows for many of us: to incorporate Christ intentionally into our rhythms, our days.

The people surrounding Jesus wanted to make a big deal out of his biological mother and his half-brothers. But Jesus wanted to make a big deal of those who would just simply trust him, listen to him, and obey.

Today, be faithful with the small things that God has given you. Simply trust him, and simply obey.

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