Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Wednesday Words of Encouragement

I Samuel 15:22 (NLT) ~

But Samuel replied,
“What is more pleasing to the Lord:
    your burnt offerings and sacrifices
    or your obedience to his voice?
Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice,
    and submission is better than offering the fat of rams.
A good friend is saying goodbye to her children and grandchildren today as they board a plane to fly to the other side of the world as missionaries.  I know she is thrilled that they are following the Lord's leading but at the same time,is incredibly sad because it will be a long time before she sees them again.  Her son and daughter-in-law are saying goodbye to all that's familiar, safe and secure to go where God is leading them.  They are wonderful examples of people who are obedient to the Lord's call.
We may not be heading overseas to a dangerous country.  We may not ever have to leave our community, but are we being obedient to do what God has called us to do?  Are we just paying the Lord lip service and yet, never actually do the thing He is asking us to do?
In this passage in I Samuel, Saul said he wanted to do the Lord's bidding but when it came to reality, he did his own thing.  And that is the reason for Samuel's rebuke in this verse and as a result of his disobedience, he lost his kingship.
Do you fall into that trap?  Do you tell the Lord that you will follow wherever He leads, but then do the opposite?  Is obedience difficult?  Often we live like the church sign that someone saw recently, "Don't say Father on Sunday and then live like an orphan the rest of the week." 
Don't just give God your lip service.  Do what He asks.  The reality is we can make all the promises in the world, but if we are not walking in obedience to God's word than our promises are meaningless.
My friend and her husband are obedient to the promise they made when they dedicated their son to the Lord as a baby.  Her son and wife are being obedient by stepping onto that plane today to fly around the world to a strange, new land. 
Put feet to the lip service.  Step out in faith and be obedient!  Let's pay attention to what God is telling us and then go a step further and actually do it.