Tuesday, October 10, 2017

When You Read The Book and Do What it Says


She said what a lot of people say. "You're doing a good thing taking care of Sam."

I shrugged it off. It doesn't seem particularly impressive to me. "I'm just doing what The Book says, doing unto as I want to be done unto," I told her. 

"Yeah, but hardly anyone does. You actually try to do what the Bible says. That's what's so remarkable."

I laughed at that. She doesn't get to see all the times I fail at obedience, or hear me whine about the workload. She doesn't see all the other people who are serving as caregivers, either. I'm not the only one. There are lots of us.

Her words, though, have stuck with me. It took me a while to understand her fascination was with the concept of no-holds-barred obedience, not with caregiving. 

Her comments left me wondering. Why don't we try harder to obey everything God's Word tells us to do?

Yesterday, I stopped repeatedly to repent of a bad attitude. I knew where that would take me, and I didn't want it. I took a step toward making a strained relationship right, because the body of Christ should be a picture of unity. I sacrificed my own desires to give someone else what they wanted, because my greater desire was to please God, not myself.

None of those things made me special. They made me obedient. 

If we're disciples of Jesus, we do what He says. It's that simple. It's that hard. We need look no further than the Greatest Commandment, the Royal Law of our King, and the Second, to see that Jesus was serious about how we live. "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength. Love your neighbor as you love yourself."

Those two sentences change everything. Our desires must take a back seat to God and our fellow men. That's it. How we treat people must be directed by our love, as well as the words we say and the actions we take. 

Love of this magnitude is not optional. It's supposed to be the driving force behind our lives every single day.

I like the way the Message says it. "Merely hearing God's law is a waste of time if you don't do what it says. Doing, not hearing, is what makes the difference with God." Romans 2:13 The Message

Paul's right. If we're disciples, we do what our Master says. If we don't make an effort to do all He said, we're not disciples. That truth has eternal implications, so we need to get this straight in our hearts, then walk it out with our lives.

Christians act like Christ. 

Today, let's ask God to give us a Holy heart-check. How obedient are we? In what areas are we lacking? What needs to change so that we, too, can follow our Master through obedience? Knowing what needs to change isn't important if we refuse to make the changes that are needed. 

Today"s the day for change. Love with abandon. Live like eternity is just a heartbeat away, because it is. Read The Book (Bible) and do what it says.
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I'm headed back to that beautiful land of Gilead. My small group, the Sisters of Strength, are praying me through, just as they've done before. They've scheduled an alert on their phones at 12 noon daily to stop and pray. My phone is already set. I hope you'll schedule a prayer-alert, too.

If you'd like to share in my experiences, you can join me for mostly-daily email updates. Please message me with your name and/or email address. I'll update as I have internet access. (I will not be able to share most stories on the blog for a variety of reasons.)

In case you missed yesterday's post, here the link: Becoming the Balm of Gilead

If you feel led to partner with me for the upcoming Middle East trip, here's the link to give your tax-deductible donations: Global Outreach Acct 4841 

You can also mail your check or money order to: Global Outreach/ PO Box 1, Tupelo MS 38802. Be sure to put Account 4841 in the "for" line.