I’m Not Stubborn!

I’m not stubborn!July 28 2014 stubborn

I’m not stubborn!

These words make me smile because it brings back a memory that is now precious of my daughter when she was a  small, very determined, 5 year old.  Her older brother would tease her about being stubborn and she would yell these words loudly and repeatedly – proving his point.

But she couldn’t see that.  Her mind was closed to the idea that her behavior was anything other than acceptable.

She was just a little girl with a lot to learn.  She has since grown into a beautiful, extremely intelligent, still very determined young woman who hasn’t said these words in a long time.

Just like us – we don’t say the words.  But do we have this attitude?  Can we take down the self-protective walls that we’ve built in our minds and take an honest look at our behavior?  Is there a stubborn streak there?  I know I can be stubborn.  In the past I would have said it was because I was always right but God has already shown me the error of that thinking 🙂

Jeremiah tells us in his 7th chapter that God accuses Israel of being stubborn.  He has commanded them to obey him but they do not listen.  They ‘follow the stubborn inclination of their evil hearts.’

Ouch!

Our stubbornness leads to behavior that does not please God.

Please open our eyes to our stubbornness, dear Father, so we can let you transform it into obedience.

Really?

God promises to use Gideon to save Israel and Gideon still has to test God by throwing out a fleece – not once but twice?March 19 2014

Why?  God always keeps his promises.  Did Gideon just not have enough faith to take God at his word?  He had to see God jump through some extra hoops before he would obey?

Yes, God responded BOTH times but I’ll bet he wasn’t smiling.  This an another example of just how much patience God has with us.

I believe in asking God for guidance when the next step isn’t clear.  I believe in asking him to give me the opportunity if I’m supposed to speak to someone about something God has revealed to me.

But, when he has clearly told me what he was going to do, he’s  looking for obedience, not tests.  There doesn’t need to be any fleece throwing in those situations.

The more we know about God, the easier it is to hear him.  As we grow closer we get to God,  his whispers are enough to get our attenion.  I’m so glad you’re on this journey with me because that is where we’re going – closer to the source of all Truth, closer to God.

Draw us nearer, dear Father.

If You Love Me…..

Keep my commands.

This verse is one of the spiritual markers in my life.  About 25 years ago, the Holy Spirit broke through a barrier in my mind and sunk these words deep into my heart.

Nov 14 2013If I loved Jesus, I would keep his commands.

Of course I loved Jesus!  I had been saying this my entire life!  Longer than I can remember!

But was I keeping his commands – doing what he said?

Umm.  Some times.  A little of it.

So, did that mean I only loved Jesus a little bit?

I felt like I loved Jesus a lot but my level of committment and obedience just didn’t line up with that.

If I really loved Jesus a lot, then I needed to be doing a lot of what he said.

Or stop saying I loved him.

Wow!  A bunch of things in my heart and in my life needed to change!  I wasn’t a bad person but I was definitely trying to be my own little god by attempting to control the world – or at least my own little corner of the world.

My need for control needed to go.  Worrying need to go – worrying is not trusting.  How I used my time, talents and treasures needed to line up with God’s will, not mine.

As my life has gradually gotten more in line with God’s plans and purposes for me, the fact that I really love Jesus has become much more obvious.

It all comes down to one word – obedience.

Thank you in advance, dear Father, for giving me the strength, the wisdom and the courage I will need for the rest of this journey.