We don’t want to be held accountable for something we didn’t know about, but we tend to hold our loved ones accountable all the time. We get the steps backward. We expect obedience before giving instruction, and listening before trust.
God doesn’t function that way. He gives us clear instructions, but the ball is in our court whether we listen to and obey those instructions.
It’s mind-boggling to me how much grace and patience God has with us, and has had with His people throughout history. During the time of the Kings in ancient Israel, we read about king after king after king who did evil in the sight of the Lord. Not only did the kings do evil, but they led God’s people to do evil as well. Yet God continued to love and instruct them along the way.
In 2 Kings 17, God exiled Israel to Assyria. Make no mistake - this was no spontaneous temper tantrum of a response from God (the way mine was over the dirty stove). 2 Kings 17: 7, 14 explain, "All this took place because the Israelites had sinned against the Lord their God...they would not listen...They did not trust in the Lord their God." The Israelites didn't trust in God; therefore, they would not listen to Him which resulted in disobedience and ultimately their exile.
Do you find yourself frustrated by a repeated sin in your life?
Try applying the principles from 2 Kings. First, trust in God. What does that look like practically? For me, trusting in God means refusing to fall into the trap of making plans and creating solutions for every “maybe” that pops up in my life. It means leaning into the vision that He has given me for my life and our family, and repeating the promises He has made when my faith falls short. Trusting in God even means that when life doesn’t look the way I expected it to look, I still thank God for His sovereignty.
Second, listen to His Word. In order to listen to His Word, you have to be exposing yourself to it. Maybe that means joining a Rooted Moms small group and reading through the Bible with them. Maybe it means listening to the Bible in audio format while folding the laundry or loading the dishwasher. It might mean listening to a podcast or sermon in the car on the way to work, or doing a Bible study with your church family.
When you’ve trusted and listened, obedience will follow.
Do you trust God?
Are you fully trusting that His plan for your life is better than your plans?
Have you been listening to who God says you are in Him?
Do you listen to the fact that you have the power to obey God?
I’m grateful that God doesn’t expect us to obey Him without first trusting Him and then listening to His Word. Take some time this week to truly listen to what God is saying about you and to you, and let that deepen your trust in Him to a level you’ve never experienced.
Memory Verse: “But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him.” Jeremiah 17:7 NIV
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