It was a big word in our home for years.
Our children learned what it meant early. Whatever the situation, they found we meant it when we asked them to obey. Bless their little rebellious hearts back then. They also found there were consequences to their opposing actions.
As their parents, my husband and I knew better than their toddler selves of what would keep them safe, what would protect them, and what would be the best for them. We didn’t ask obedience from them out of cruelty or unfairness (they might argue with us on this), but solely out of love.
Interestingly enough, our Heavenly Father does the same with us.
He asks us to obey Him out of love.
No one knows you and me better. After all, we are His unique creation. He knows what’s best for us. And what might be best for me, may not be for you. He calls us to follow His Son, Jesus, and to follow the path He’s laid out for us… the one that’s best.
But, I’ve been known to behave just like our young children used to. I’ve wanted my own way. I’ve thrown temper tantrums. I’ve whined and I’ve cried. I’ve ran and hid. I’ve stomped my foot, and yelled “no!” I’ve dug my high heels in, and refused to budge.
Especially when what He was asking didn’t make sense. Especially when He drew me into deeper waters, beyond where I was comfortable. Especially when I couldn’t see where we were headed. I got hung up on the destination.
Where are you taking me, Jesus?
And just like our children, I’ve experienced the consequences of my disobedience.
The moment Jesus says, “Come with me,” and we follow in obedience, something happens within us. Something amazing, miraculous, and incredible happens when we simply trust our Savior, and forego trusting ourselves. Even when we can’t see where He’s taking us. We begin to become who we were created to be.
We become His disciple.
Suzie Eller, in her newest book, Come With Me, says it beautifully,
“Our encounters with Jesus as his disciple become less about the end destination and more about the invitation to trust him, wherever that leads, whatever he asks us to do. For Jesus meets us where we are with one plan in mind: to change us forever.”
I’m finding the destination in following Jesus is often a place of purpose, of growth, of blessing, and is altogether a place that’s for our good, and a place we couldn’t have arrived on our own.
Jesus called me to forgive. I wanted to linger in the bitterness. The destination He led me to was freedom in forgiveness.
Jesus called me to follow. I was comfortable where I was. The destination was fulfillment and healing.
Jesus called me to love. I couldn’t possibly love that person. The destination was a transformation of the heart.
Jesus called me to trust. I wanted details. The destination was a strengthened faith.
I’ve given up needing to know where I’m going, as long as Jesus is my guide.
Friend, where is Jesus asking you to go today? Do you hear Him whispering, “Come with me?” In what area of life is He calling you to trust Him?
I know it’s hard. I know it’s not easy. But, if I’ve learned anything at all, I’ve learned it’ll be worth it. Let’s take the first step together. Ready? Set? Go…
I encourage you to pick up Suzie Eller’s latest book, Come With Me. It’s one of those books that meets you right where you are. Through the examples of Jesus’ twelve disciples, and their answer to His “come with me,” you’ll be encouraged and strengthened to follow Him to wherever He leads you. I’d love to take this journey with you!
Linking up with Suzie Eller for #livefreeThursday.
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What a great reminder for me. I’ve been overwhelmed and discouraged by the lack of response to VBS which starts in a week. With only 5 students signed up, the hours and hours of hard work and meetings and phone calls required I question my “obedience “. I begin to doubt. Did I really hear God’s call to lead the charge? Obstacle after obstacle has occured. You’ve reminded me that obedience is hard work and the results are in God’s hand
Thank you Julie.
Hi Mary! I am praying for your VBS. Yes, the results are up to God, and no matter what the results are, you can take great joy in the fact that you were obedient in following God’s call. Praying many attend, and for seeds to be planted in fertile hearts!
THIS: ““Our encounters with Jesus as his disciple become less about the end destination and more about the invitation to trust him, wherever that leads, whatever he asks us to do. For Jesus meets us where we are with one plan in mind: to change us forever.” I’ll have to check out this book.
It’s a good one, Tara. Bless you!
I hear the words of Elisabeth Elliot running through my mind as I read your words: “Delayed obedience is disobedience.” True for our kids — true for us too!
Good words, Michele! Thank you for those. I’ll be pondering them in the days to come. So glad you stopped over and shared them. Bless you!
This I can really relate to. I am not very trusting and that negative bleeds over into my relationship with Jesus. I try and remember that every time I have obeyed, whether thrilled or nervous, it has been good. And I keep in mind too, that if he were to let me know the end result right away, I’d probably run! I need the lessons and journey along the way to be prepared for the final destination to be what it can and should be.
Hi Kim! I love how God continues to show His faithfulness, and when He does, our trust strengthens. Yes, it’s probably good He doesn’t show us the end result… I’d be running right along with you! Hope you are well, friend. Thanks for being here!