Day5

Obedience



Isaiah 58:11, John 10:1-15, John 14:15-26, Acts 16:6-10, Galatians 5:25, James 1:5-6

BY Bailey Gillespie

In my early years with Jesus, the idea of obedience felt restrictive, like a wool sweater that just feels too scratchy to wear. My will won out, and I let fear of unknown outcomes stop me from saying “yes” to God. As I’ve continued to walk with Jesus, He’s shown me that by asking for my obedience, He isn’t trying to hold me back from the good life, but guide me straight into the heart of it.

Jesus said the one who keeps His commands loves Him (John 14:21). When we look at Scripture, we find general instructions for how to keep these commands, but it can take guidance to apply these to individual situations. And so God does not leave us to ourselves; He gives us the Holy Spirit as a trustworthy guide (v.26) and a community of believers to walk alongside us. 

One habit I’ve formed in my own practice of obedience is journaling. Some days, the path of obedience is clear: Forgive her. Confess this sin. But when I find myself on the verge of a decision that doesn’t seem to have a clear direction given in Scripture, I write about it to seek the Lord’s will. You could call it a glorified pros-and-cons list. But there’s something powerful about the process of naming things, of getting them outside the confines of your head, that God uses to bring clarity and conviction. 

First, I pray over whatever I’ve written and then call up one to two people whose counsel has proven trustworthy. This might be a lifelong friend or mentor, maybe a leader in my church community. Whoever it is, they know me and live their own lives open-heartedly before the Lord. After sitting with this counsel for an hour, a week, or even a year, I wait for the peace of the Holy Spirit, which confirms agreement with the advice, and then act. Every now and then, the situation kicks me in the pants and requires me to act before I know for certain where God is leading. The good news? When our heart is to obey, He’s faithful to redirect our steps if needed. 

If I’m honest, saying “yes” to God can be hard. Even though I love Him and want to keep His commands, there are days when I don’t follow Him well; I walk the other way when sin looks more enticing than the familiar, scratchy-sweater feeling of shedding my sin and becoming new in Christ. (I’m sure you know what I’m talking about.) Galatians says, “If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit” (Galatians 5:25). This doesn’t mean obedience gets easier with time, but it does get harder to ignore the voice of our trusted friend and Savior, Jesus. 

Obedience sets us free. It brings peace. Our reward is the satisfaction of knowing we are walking in God’s will. As you practice obedience, pray for the Spirit of the Lord to guide you. To echo the prophet Isaiah’s words, “The LORD will always lead you, satisfy you in a parched land, and strengthen your bones” (Isaiah 58:11).

Post Comments (115)

115 thoughts on "Obedience"

  1. Destiny McIvor says:

    I like that it mentions obedience will never get easy but hearing the voice of the lord in those moments will

  2. Carla Francesca says:

    A very hard lesson to learn in life, but definitely one of the best ones!

  3. Amber Smith says:

    Gave me chills! I really related with struggling with my will instead of letting God guide me

  4. Paige B says:

    This is so fitting for where I’m at right now. Last week my husband and I had a word spoken over us that we would take over a ministry at our church. I immediately thought of youth ministry but didn’t think much of it because there’s already a great couple leading that. However, I prayed about it every day just for guidance, and that if it was youth group that we were supposed to take over, God would give us a clear sign one way or the other….. the next Sunday when we got to church, our pastor announced that the current youth leaders would be stepping down and they’d be looking for replacements in the coming few weeks…. Can’t get any more clear than that! I am terrified as I don’t feel qualified. Im only 23 and we have an 8 month old daughter who I was planning on staying home with…. But if this is where god is calling us, I don’t want to ignore it! Trying my best to take a leap of faith and obey if this is where he’s pulling us… but it’s easier said than done. I’m scared! Prayer and encouragement would be very appreciated!!!

  5. Becca Pickett says:

    AMEN!

  6. Kayla Harmon says:

    Loved this, so so powerful!!

  7. Pamela Reyes says:

    Journaling is hard for me, to be honest. I have always started with gusto and flare out. I’m praying I can gain obedience.

  8. Jessica Morgan says:

    Loved every part of this devo! Basically highlighted the entire passage

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.