Summary: Christ showed us His formula for success. "The figure of the Crucified invalidates all thought which takes success for its standard." Dietrich Bonhoeffer Everyone who wants to make a success out of his or her life has to remain teachable. Jesus humbled H
Learning Successful Obedience through Adversity
Hebrews 5:8 - "Even though He was a Son. He learned obedience through the things He suffered."
Illustration: The figure of the Crucified invalidates all thought which takes success for its standard.
Everyone who wants to make a success out of his or her life has to remain teachable. Jesus humbled Himself by temporarily setting aside His rights to take on the form of a man. Through the ordeals of life Jesus’ humanity was made perfect through suffering. Even though he was the Son of God, it was necessary for Jesus as a human being to learn obedience not because he was disobedient, yet so He could obey God in areas He had never experienced before.
Application: Through practice, we finely tune our senses to discern good and evil. Without a learner’s attitude we will miss out on many valuable lessons that the Lord wants to teach us in His quest to perfect us in every area.
1. INCREASE YOUR INTIMACY WITH THE LORD - Jesus taught His disciples that people would only obey those who they know and trust. The more we know the Lord’s attributes they more we are able to trust Him. A close relationship with the Lord enhances our ability to obey Him in all areas of life and ministry. Those who struggle to obey the Lord are lacking in their knowledge and trust in the Lord’s complete characteristics. Jesus told the disciples, "If the world persecutes me, they will also persecute you. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the One who sent me." (John 15:20,21) The greatest challenges today involve helping people know, love and trust the Lord with all their heart – obedience will follow.
2. ALWAYS BE TEACHABLE - Jesus exemplified a teachable attitude from the time of his youth. After three days of frantically looking for their lost twelve year old son, Mary and Joseph found Jesus in the temple courts sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. Everyone in the temple were amazed the level of His understanding and answers. When his parents saw him they were astonished. He mother said, "Son, why have you treated us like this? Your father and I have been anxiously searching for you. Jesus said, "Why were you searching for me? Did you not know that I had to be in my Father’s house? (Lk. 2;47-50)
3. GROW HOLISTICALLY - Jesus continued to grow in wisdom throughout His life. Doctor Luke writes about Jesus, "And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men." (Luke 2:52) Every believer has a responsibility to grow mentally, socially, culturally, morally, emotionally, physically, and spiritually. When we cease to grow we are subject to regressions.
4. HUMBLE YOURSELF UNDER GOD’S HAND - Jesus knew that the biggest obstacle to success would be a person’s pride. The Lord said, "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls." (Matt. 11:28,29) It is only when we recognize our inadequacies that we will be able to learn what the Lord wants to teach us. God cannot teach people who are proud, arrogant or self-absorbed.
5. TAKE ON MINISTRY RESPONSIBILITIES - Jesus encouraged others to learn more about Him by assuming ministry responsibilities. Jesus told people, "Take my yoke upon you and learn of Me." The Lord wants all of us to learn more about Him, His will for our life and our own capacities through ministry experiences. Only when we are able to get out of the security of our own shell are we able to realize the potential we have in Christ. Many people remain as spiritual infants because they lack the faith and obedience to take on service responsibilities.
6. BE UNPRENTIOUS - Jesus taught that unless everyone assumes the innocent teachability of children we would never enter heaven. Jesus said, "Unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven… therefore whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven." (Matt. 18:3,34) The Lord praised the children’s’ trusting, unpretentious and teachable attitudes. It is better to humble ourselves before God than to be embarrassed by our own prideful stupidity.
7. LET THE SPIRIT GUIDE - Jesus gave us the Holy Spirit to be our ever-present teacher. The Lord said, "But, when He the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth." (John 16:13) Only when we are walking in close relationship with God are we able to hear the voice of the Spirit. Make every effort to spend time every morning receiving instructions from the Spirit of God for what He wants you to do.