Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Trust and Obey

I was reminded of my oldest nephews this morning. They are twins. 25 (or 26, sorry guys) and married. One has a beautiful baby daughter now. This morning while I was running I wasn't thinking of their mature, Godly, grown up lives. I was reminded of two adorable four year olds I knew long before I ever dreamed of becoming their aunt.

See, I've been struggling with obedience for most of this 4th decade of life. It's a word that gets my shackles up. It's not that I don't want to obey God. It's just that obedience has long been rooted in legalism for me. In the effort to be free of the shackles of religious "shoulds" and "can'ts," I have swung the pendulum to the other side. You know, the "Give me liberty or give me death," kind of Christianity.

Yet I still bump into my sin and I know there are areas of my life where the way out of the pit is through obedience to God's loving direction. However, as soon as I get the faintest whiff of "Do it because God says so," my pharisee sensors start beeping and I react away from what could ultimately be for my good. I seem to be caught in a cyclical battle between the fullness of life God promised and the religious baggage of our culture and personal experience.

Years ago in a four year old class at church I was sitting with a circle of children and I asked them what their favorite song was. Usually you get the classics, like the ABC song, or Old MacDonald. The twins' answer jumped out at me, and stuck with me, because it wasn't your typical four year old answer. One of them, I don't remember which one, said, "Twust and Obey". You know, the old classic, "Trust and obey, for there's no better way, to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey."

This morning, as I ran, their precious little voices broke into my thoughts as I considered life, being stuck, the way out and how to change. Real change. "Twust and obey." The key to Biblical obedience - obedience not based on rules but based on love - is trust. If I truly grow in trusting that God has my very best at the center of His intentions, it moves my obedience from the place of "I'm doing this because the Bible says, therefore I have to" to "I'm choosing this because my good and loving Father says it will be best, even if I can't see it as good from where I stand."

So thanks Andrew and Taylor. I know you were only four, but your words echo for a long, long time. And today they blessed Aunt Jennifer.

1 comment:

  1. I'm famous! On a serious note though, thanks Aunt Jen. Good and timely post.