19 April 2006

More Searching for God Knows What reflections - obedience

Recently I responded to something like this...

“That wouldn’t be appropriate.”

“Well, your parents wouldn’t hate you or kick you out or anything.”

"No, of course not.”

Why does it matter then?

I’ve thought a lot about obedience lately. The thing is I believe being a Christ follower is not just about obedience. I’m not sure if that communicates it… I obey not because of the consequences, but because I’m sure of Christ’s love for me, and I love Him. Why would I intentionally do something to hurt the only one who loves me completely? In a similar way, my parents love me dearly, and I love them. Therefore, I don’t want to do anything that would hurt them. The relational element is the important thing. Our lists of what Christians should and shouldn’t do miss the main point. What 2 commandments did Jesus say were most important? 1. Love God. 2. Love your neighbor. Love. Those are potentially the 2 most difficult commandments to understand. Don't Kill. Don't commit adultery. Sure. Those are straight forward and everyone knows exactly what they mean. But what does it mean to love? Love can't really be broken down into lists. For instance, try to list all the steps of falling in love...

  1. Meet a guy (at least this is how it would start for me).
  2. Get to know him
  3. ... What would this step be? Fall in love and pray that he loves you? That doesn't really help with the list...

Love chooses to put what someone else wants about your own desires. Being a Christ follower isn't about following a certain set of guidelines or acknowledging certain facts or to be true (not that those aren't important at all... their just incomplete by themselves). It's about knowing and accepting the love of Christ and loving Him. Loving Christ with your entire heart makes you want to put what He wants above your own desires. You may have to sacrifice old habits, but if it makes Him happy... then it makes me happy. Love, love, love... that's what it's all about.

What does love look like?

"The LORD is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.

He will not always accuse,
nor will he harbor his anger forever;

he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.

For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;

as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us."
Psalm 103: 8-12

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