Joyful are people of integrity,
    who follow the instructions of the Lord.

Psalm 119:1 NLT

The word “obey” and the concept of obedience is not one that I hear spoken and discussed in the Christian community as much as I used to. Yet Jesus frequently used it. He said, “Those who know my commands and obey them are the ones who love me, and my Father will love those who love me. I will love them and will show myself to them” (John 14:21NCV).

In Jesus’ mind obedience was connected with love and trust. Unfortunately, because of their sad experience, for many people, obedience is associated with abuse, loss of freedom, and broken trust.

How can anyone who’s experienced these things, under the false claim that this is what God wants, think that obedience could be positive, healthy and enjoyable?

Jesus never calls us to do anything that is evil. He does not tell us to throw away our mind. He tells us to count the cost and fully respects our “yes” or “no”.

Another block to obedience, one I often face, is the resistance of the sin nature (called “the flesh”). Again, Jesus provided for this by giving us the companionship and power of the Holy Spirit.

I “digested” the meaning of all this in a poem, which is a form of prayer for me. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the topic of obedience.

 It is possible to obey--
 The law with its demands has gone.
The comfort of grace has come.
By the Spirit, I trust and obey.
It is delightful to obey--
For I know by glad experience
The sweetness of Christ’s presence
By the Spirit, I trust and obey
It is possible to obey--
 I’m not concerned with pleasing me
From that bondage, I’m set free
By the Spirit, I trust and obey
It is powerful to obey--
Through strength and persistence,
I conquer my resistance.
By the Spirit, I trust and obey
It is possible to obey--
‘Cause Jesus who kept God’s commands
Gives me power to follow them
By the Spirit, I trust and obey.
It is satisfying to obey--
With a heart full of gratitude
And joy as my attitude.
By the Spirit, I trust and obey.

Jane Ault

6 Responses

  1. I love the words your wrote “I’m not concerned with pleasing me, from that bondage I’m set free.” That is profoundly beautiful and the key to Life in Christ. Thank-you for your journey of words to help others on their way.

  2. Jane, I’ve added your poem to my 4/13 blog post, as I think it follows the main portion on “Running the Race.” Thanks for sharing! I’ll let you know of it’s posting.

    1. Thanks so much, Jean. Your faithfulness in running the race God has set before you as a writer encourages me.

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