Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Instead

What do you do instead of obeying God?

Do you follow God in the "big" things but neglect His will in the "small" or vice versa?

That's something I have been thinking about. I have been part of a book discussion, going through the book, How People Grow.

Last week's chapter was called, How the big picture affects the small. It was about a pastor, his wife and their marital and life problems. They were a couple who wanted to follow God. They gave their lives in ministry and did all the things that are supposed to make us "good Christians"; still they had serious problems.

Here is a paragraph that really stood out to me:

For example, when God said, "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you" (Eph. 4:32), Rich and Stephanie did not say that God really didn't say that or that it wasn't really true. Instead they did two things. They ignored the reality that if they disobeyed it, their relationship would die. And when their relationship was dying, they did not seek God's rules and principles as the way to revive their marriage. They did not ask, "Where is our marriage suffering because we are not living in deep obedience to God's ways?"
The specific way it spoke to me was in my avoidance of resolving conflict in my marriage. I now see that by not doing that, other consequences are popping up. I see the answer to the question, Where is our marriage suffering because we are not living in deep obedience to God's ways?

I thought that I could avoid the battle of trying to resolve conflict by ignoring it. The "peace" achieved seemed better than entering the arena.

But God wants something different. He wants to bring understanding, resolve and reconciliation. So I will let Him take me that way. When conflict comes, I will seek His way to work through it. I will admit my way hasn't worked.

What about you? What are you doing instead of obeying God? Is there an area in your life where you are suffering because you are not living in deep obedience to God's ways?

Philip

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