By Will Mullen

Obedience is a word that gets a really bad rap. I think this has a lot to do with all the negative history we associate with the word. That is definitely understandable. I think it also has a lot to do with our society’s disdain and disrespect for authority of all kinds.

On the one hand, I get that people in positions of authority can and often do abuse the powers of certain positions while lording them over others. And I know that many people have been on the victim side of that. On the other hand, though, others use their hurt from this to identify as victims and thereby justify behaving however they would like.

I’m a husband, and a father of two now and I am continually growing and learning as I teach and try to model obedience to my children.

Nothing has taught me more about my walk with God than raising children. It’s helped me start to understand some things.

I love my son unconditionally. But I do not reward my son unconditionally.

I don’t want to be a parent who doesn’t set a standard for their children’s behavior. One who when their children act up, lets it go without discipline. This would perpetuate destructive behavior and I love my children too much to watch that happen.

As Christians, we love that God loves us unconditionally. We most definitely should. But have some of us become, dare I say, a little entitled? Have we painted a picture of a God who rewards us unconditionally? There is a whole bible full of conditional blessings and conditional rewards. He’s not a parent who will spoil us and enable our disobedience. He loves his children too much to watch that happen. God longs to bless you! He longs to reward you! More than anything though, he wants you and he wants you to want him back!

As it says in Psalm 37:4-5, “Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires. Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust him, and he will help you.”

Many often wonder why they are in a place of stagnation spiritually or in a chapter of life where God just isn’t rewarding them. Maybe we’ve conditioned ourselves to seek the goodies in his hands rather than his face. Maybe we’re seeking his presents and not his presence.

“If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.” (John 15:7-8)

July 1, 2024