Hello again, Willing Spirits!
I hope your week was full of blessings and joy. We thank God because we are well into June now and the weather is also complying! I pray this week is even better and also better for those who didn’t have a good week. God is here for us all!
Do you ever think “If only I listened“?
Many situations, in retrospect, could have been voided of problems had we just listened to an instruction given to us from someone, the bible or the Holy Spirit warning us. Because of our disobedience, we may have ended up paying the price for it–sacrificing something. You’ve probably heard this week’s verse as a proverb: ‘obedience is better than sacrifice‘. In this verse, Samuel stated this because Saul had only partially obeyed God‘s command of attacking ‘…the Amalekites and totally destroy all that belongs to them‘ [1 Samuel 15:3 NIV]. Partial obedience is still disobedience. Because Saul had done this, God rejected him as king–the sacrifice.
Obedience being better than sacrifice is illustrated throughout the whole bible. There are many stories where we can see the consequences of obeying and disobeying. For example, Jonah being instructed to go to Nineveh where his consequences for not going at first was being eaten by a big fish. Now, this doesn’t mean that if we disobey God we too will get eaten by a big fish but the consequences could have a similar impact. Other times, the consequence may be needing to fast to break the yoke of the enemy, because fasting too, is a sacrifice. We are sacrificing food and comfortability to seek God, forgiveness, deliverance etc. (You can have a read of my post on fasting here!: https://hearmycry.co.uk/2021/03/15/fasting/)
If we were to obey, there would be no need to turn to fasting as if it’s not a last resort. We know that Jesus responded to John‘s disciples that His own disciples did not need to fast, because He was there with them. Jesus knew that they would obey Him as He was dwelling with them so there would be no need for fasting. It wasn’t until Jesus would leave that they would need to fast since the temptation to derail from instruction would be great. We could see this with Peter, who denied knowing Jesus 3 times when asked about Him. At that moment, Jesus wasn’t present with Peter as opposed to when He was, and Peter claimed to love Him so dearly that he would never deny Him.
This is not to say that fasting or prayer isn’t good, but it is also important to ‘…watch and pray…’ [Matthew 26:41 NKJV]. Our actions are just as important. So we can pray and fast but if we disobey God and go against his commandments, it is almost void. The commandment of ‘…honour your father and mother…’ is the only commandment with a promise ‘…that your days may be long…’ [Exodus 20:12 NKJV]. Obedience. There is order in the world for a reason. Everyone has someone they report to and the chain leads up to God. If we cannot obey those we see–parents, bosses etc–how do we expect to obey that which we can’t see–God?
Once we humble ourselves and understand the said order, we can begin in the right direction to following God‘s instructions. His instructions are there to ensure we have a good, everlasting life with Him. Who wouldn’t want that? I don’t know about you but when I obey a command given to me specifically, I feel a sense of joy and peace within me. Now imagine if we did that every time we were faced with a decision to obey or disobey! The enemies would be our enemies without a cause. But at least then God can deal with them.
So let us continue to read God‘s word where most of His instructions are there and continuing praying for Him to renew our minds so that we may have the ability to listen and carry out what He asks of us!
Stay blessed! Until next week, God willing!
– A Willing Spirit x