We love so many things in this life! Yet, there is one thing so worth loving that is seldom afforded even the smallest of tender emotions; it is our will to obey. From an early time in our lives forward, obedience comes at a high price and is most often accompanied by only a grudging will to comply. Whereas we love to comply when our will and that of our overseer or parent are one, when the gap grows and differences occur, obedience because a manacle and not the blessing that God intended it to be.
Obey! That’s one word we just don’t like dealing with. It conjures up all kinds of subservient images. In a society where independence, self-determination and equality are held in such high esteem, how can something like obedience even rate a sigh? What it comes down to is this: we have a will and it is going in this direction. If your will matches up, fine! If it doesn’t, see you later.
I ran across a poem entitled Obedience by George MacDonald many years ago that was so moving I kept copy of it. I’ve folded and placed it in my Bible so that I would be inclined to pull it out and read it when life and my own willful desires become become overpowering.
I said, “Let me walk in the fields.”
He said, “No, walk in the town.”
I said, “I shall miss the light
“And friends will miss me, they say.”
He answered: “Choose ye tonight
“If I am to miss you, or they.”
He pleaded for time to be given.
He said, “Is it hard to decide?
“It will not seem hard in heaven
“To have followed the steps of your Guide.”
I cast one look at the fields,
Then set my face to the town.
He said, “My child, do you yield?
Will you leave the flowers for the crown?”
Then into His hand went mine,
And into my heart came He;
And I walk in a light divine
The path I had feared to see.
When we take the time to stop and reflect on the paths that we “had feared to see”, it would be good to remember the One whose obedience was perfect. Even He, whose will was more perfect than any man who ever lived, subjected Himself to the will of His Father in Heaven. He who humbled Himself despite the fact that He bore no sin and rightfully should have placed Himself above all creation, submitted to the will of ...
Continue reading this sermon illustration (Free with PRO)
Related Text Illustrations
Contributed by Ponce Brown on Oct 5, 2001
One author in his writings on the subject of becoming authentic noted that William Faulkner, the novelist, toiled for years as an unknown, disrespected writer in rural Mississippi before he finally gained recognition. When he won the Nobel Prize for literature in 1950, his acclaim grew. When ...read more
Contributed by Brian La Croix on Oct 16, 2001
There is a story of a young hippie who gave his life to Christ during the Jesus Movement of the late sixties and early seventies. One Sunday he went to a church, not knowing it was one of the more “upper class” churches in the area. He was late to the service, and the pastor was about to ...read more
Contributed by Guy Mcgraw on May 20, 2002
In John 8:12 Jesus makes a startling statement, ‘I am the light of the World. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness but have the light of life’. This statement was made during a special Jewish Feast, the FEAST OF TABERNACLES. In the Temple treasury stood four massive golden candelabras ...read more
Contributed by Ed Vasicek on Jan 28, 2003
THE BATTLE AND A GARDEN-- COMMUNION MEDITATION It is interesting that Jesus went to the “Garden of Gethsemane” on the Mount of Olives. The garden still exists today, including a number of olive trees which may date back to the time of Jesus. “Gethsemane” comes to us from the Hebrew into the ...read more
Contributed by Paul Fritz on Oct 18, 2000
Jesus knew that new believers needed a different diet of spiritual food and exercise than the more mature. The Lord Jesus knew the wisdom of Heb 5:14 which says, "But solid food is for the mature who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish
Contributed by Paul Fritz on Oct 18, 2000
Everyone needs to feel appreciated. It does not take long before people become discouraged if they are not acknowledged for their fine efforts. Jesus made a habit out of showing appreciation to those who it was due. One day, Jesus commended a tax collec