By Dr. Charles Stanley
Obedience is a major characteristic of a person who is mighty in spirit and honors the Lord. Generally speaking, obedience characterized the faith of Abraham from his first encounter with God until his death.
We grow in obedience by having faith in the sovereignty of God. If we fail to believe in the Father’s sovereignty, we will find it difficult to obey Him. Abraham based his relationship with God on his confidence that the Lord would always do as He had promised (Rom. 4:20, 21). Faith comes by hearing the Word of God and responding in confident trust (Rom. 10:17). We will learn to trust Him as we study and meditate on His Word.
We grow in obedience by waiting for God’s timing. The Father is very time conscious—not in terms of minutes and seconds, but in regard to our acting in obedience according to His schedule. Throughout Scripture we find Him moving in “the fullness of the time” (Gal. 4:4). He is neither early nor late. He is always right on time.
We continue to grow in obedience by refusing to subject God’s plan to “common sense” or the reasoning of the world. Some things the Lord requires may look ridiculous from a human perspective. He told Abraham that he would have a son through whom He would bless the entire world. Yet the Lord allowed Abraham’s obedience to be severely tested—first by requiring him to wait nearly a quarter of a century before providing the promised provision, and later by requiring him to offer Isaac as a sacrifice. God knew the motive of Abraham’s heart. It was one of obedience. When it came time to complete the sacrifice, the Lord was the one who provided a ram to be used in Isaac’s place.
We grow in obedience by promptly responding in obedience. If you long to obey God, you will not hesitate when He tells you to do something. Many times we fail to obey the Father because we fear the consequences. Yet He never requires us to do anything outside His will for our lives. Our only responsibility is to obey; His responsibility is to take care of the consequences of our obedience.
Our sensitivity to God’s will increases as we obey Him. Along the way, He provides glimpses of the blessings waiting for us. God always blesses obedience. You can trust Him, obey Him, and be blessed. Or you can disobey Him and spend the rest of your life wondering what He would have done had you obeyed Him. Once you glimpse the blessings of obedience, however, the consequences no longer matter.
Adapted from “The Charles F. Stanley’s Life Principles Bible,” 2008.
Source: Email Daily Devotion from InTouch Ministies