Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Obedience

Obedience. I would like to go on record and say I hate that word. I don’t consider myself defiant really it just sounds too formal and restrictive. Even as a child, I questioned most rules and to the joy of my parents obstinately debated the logic of many. I still do this. In fact, my annoyance of rules kept me from attending church in college and a few years after. Okay so maybe I am a little defiant, but I don’t like being told how to live! I prefer the freedom in making and living out my own choices! Whew. I hope that didn't make me sound too much like a teenager.

I’d like to think I’ve matured since then considering I’m quickly approaching the big 3-0 but the other day when I saw obedience as the title of my daily devotional I cringed a little. "Oh yay! A lesson on sin!" However I was taken back a little by the opening statement: “The first thing to do in examining the power that dominates me is to take hold of the unwelcome fact that I am responsible for thus being dominated.” (Oswald Chambers) Then I looked up the reference chapter, Romans, and found this verse:

Romans 6:16
Don't you know that when you offer yourselves to someone to obey him as slaves, you are slaves to the one whom you obey—whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness

Interesting. One can obey sin? Isn’t that some sort of oxymoron? Like the two words don’t belong in the same sentence. If you are sinning aren’t you going against a rule and not for one? I thought obedience was the submission. Maybe we are always, whether we want to or not, obeying something?

Obeying God usually makes me think of a list of don’ts. Don’t lie. Don’t get drunk. Don’t have sex. Don’t have fun. Oops…ignore the last one. All of these rules equating to restricting my freedom and opportunity to enjoy life. I’ve started to have a new perspective on obedience though. Sometimes obedience means doing something. Do love someone who may not be loving in return. Do give your money to someone in need even though you have little to spare. Do quit your job. God has told me to do all of these things at one time or another, the last being the most recent. And somehow that’s exciting. Exciting because I know I can’t do it and now I will have to fully rely on God. I'm finding out that obedience and submission to Christ is not willfully entering a dull life, like I once thought, but living one of wonder and excitement.

1 comment:

Chad Ethridge said...

Sadly, I often desire to be obedient so that others will notice me. This kind of self promotion dethrones Christ and exalts me. Instead, my motivation for obedience should come from a heart that is set on loving God.

"The man who says, 'I know him,' but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him." 1 John 2:4-5