Do we DELIGHT to do God’s will? Can we say with David…
‘I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.’
If I’m totally honest I don’t always delight to do God’s will. I love the Lord and want so much to please Him and yet there are those times when I hesitate and hold back, often through fear and even now there is something that I feel I need just one more confirmation when, if I’m honest, a lot of my hesitation is fear of man’s opinion.
Are there those things in your life Friend that you are holding back from obedience in?
I thought I’d share a couple of examples from my life in case it might help any of you.
Firstly with my daily social media posts. When I felt the Lord showing me that it was His will I really didn’t want to do it. Why?
It was fear, fear that I couldn’t write well, fear that I didn’t know anything and fear of what people would think and say. God was so patient with me and gave me confirmation after confirmation that it was His will until eventually after a sermon preached on….
‘Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.’
I was given the courage to obey and by God’s grace I have been helped to not only continue, leaning hard on the Lord, but have also had sweet encouragment in it too from time to time.
Friend, if there is something that the Lord has laid on your heart and has clearly shown you that it’s His will for you, ask Him to give you the courage and grace to honour Him with your obedience.
The other area that I’ve struggled with obedience in is when I feel moved to say something about God to an unbeliever, especially if it’s someone I don’t know well.
Do you find the same thing Friend? When you feel the Holy Spirit moving you to say something and you think, ‘I can’t’, or, ‘what will they think’, instead of, ‘yes Lord’ and the moment is past and that opportunity lost forever.
I didn’t share this incident at the time because I didn’t want anyone thinking it was anything of me because all the glory belongs to God and friends, so many times I’ve let an opportunity slip. But by God’s grace, on this occasion I looked to God and He gave me courage and I feel I need to share it now to maybe encourage you in obedience.
It was back in the spring and I’d had such a sweet hour in prayer early that morning and felt so full of joy. I went along to our doctors surgery for my routine blood tests and the nurse asked me how I was always so cheerful with all the chronic illnesses I have.
As I felt that nudge inside me to share I told her that I’d just had such a sweet time in prayer that morning and that I have a joy that goes beyond circumstances that comes from loving God and feeling Him close.
She said, ‘that’s what I need to do, pray.’ She then broke down and started to cry and told me that her husband had just left her and how there was no hope because he never changes his mind. She then said, ‘But I’ll do that, I’ll pray and I’ll pray for him too because he needs it too.’ which was such a sweet spirit in that hard time.
We talked a little longer and then I prayed with her (something else I’ve felt too uncomfortable to do on occasions in the past).
A few weeks later I saw her again and the first words she said were ‘it worked’!
Friends, her husband who never changes his mind had had his mind changed by God, through prayer. My prayer for them both now is that they’ll be brought to know Jesus as their Saviour.
Friends I’ve missed so many opportunities over the years and maybe you have too but when we feel not enough in ourselves, when we hesitate to obey, we need help to remember to lean harder on the Lord and go forward in His strength, with His help and courage alone. (Which is only ever the right way to go forward.)
I have proved over the years that the Lord brings beautiful things out of obedience. That doesn’t mean it’ll be easy but we’re not on this earth for an easy life, we are here for the glory of God…
‘Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him.’
May we each be given humble obedient hearts and grace to abide in the love of Christ…
‘As the Father hath loved me, so have I loved you: continue ye in my love.
If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.
These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.’
Psalm 40:8, Matt 5:13, Isaiah 43:7, John 15:9-11.