My daughter turned a year old this past fall, and we’ve officially entered that wonderful season known as “toddlerhood.”
“Don’t lick the toilet!”
“Don’t eat the Legos!"
“Don’t climb the dishwasher!"
“Don’t touch the heater!"
My reasonable instructions seem like ridiculous commands to a toddler.
She squeals and drops to the floor. Why wouldn’t mommy want me doing this very fun thing??
My days are spent keeping her from the edge of death, illness and pain, but she doesn’t know that… yet.
You can’t reason with toddlers in case you haven’t noticed. These tiny, headstrong… precious beings simply do not know and cannot understand that you have their best interest, future and safety in mind.
As Mom, I want to protect all three of my little ones from as much harm and pain as possible because of my indescribable love for them. So, I give them “do’s” and “do-not-do’s” and teach them obedience out of trust and respect.
I get frustrated when they choose to disobey despite my good intentions.
I wonder if God ever gets frustrated with me?
In the words of my pastor, I used to believe God was a “cosmic kill-joy,” up there with a list of do-not-do’s, aimed to simply keep me in line. So, after 13 years of “walking the line,” I did what most other Christian young adults do when they leave home--Rebel. In hindsight, so many of my choices caused unnecessary pain and frustration.
If you read through the Old Testament, you will find pages and pages and pages of law and instructions-- many of those brought back up in the New Testament-- taught by Jesus, Paul, and others.
Don't get drunk with wine.
Don’t hold a grudge.
Don’t let your mind or eyes linger lustfully.
Observe a day of rest.
It’s tempting to see these directions as suggestions.
Overall, the law proved that man’s futile efforts wouldn’t be enough to save themselves-- it would take a Savior. But through it all God had our best interest in mind. He can see down the road, through all of the twists and turns, when we can’t.
He knows that...
A few too many drinks can lead to undesirable behavior.
Unforgiveness only hurts you.
A desirous look can turn into an office romance.
Trying to “keep up with the Jones’s” creates straining debt.
Ignoring the body’s need for rest will lead to burn-out.
In our limited human minds, we feel as though God is trying to take away our fun. It’s so much easier to go along with the tidal wave of culture.
But God calls us to trust Him, his wisdom and his Sovereignty.
What commands have you been ignoring or avoiding? In what areas have you been tempted to write off God as a “cosmic kill-joy,” going your own way instead?
I know a major challenge for me is in the area of rest. By admission, I am a hard-working, OCD, stress-prone individual. I’ve always made a habit of excusing my inability to relax and take a few moments, a few hours, or a few days to rest completely.
Maybe yours is staying angry with that one person. You have reason after reason why you can’t forgive him or her, but what you don’t understand is that they’ve probably already moved on, and now you’re the only one living offended and angry for no good reason!
Whatever your situation, know that God has had your best interest at heart all along.
Just as I tell my precious daughter “Don’t lick the toilet!” to protect her from yuck she doesn’t yet understand-- so is God’s intention with us.
What has God asked you to do that you are holding back from today? Trust in His love, go against what your flesh or culture is saying-- heed His voice and experience His best!
Word of the Day:
“Serve only the Lord your God and fear Him alone. Obey His commands, listen to His voice, and cling to Him.” Deuteronomy 13:4
Lord, Thank you that you always have my best interest in mind, and you will always show me the right paths to take through your voice and your Word. Forgive me for not always trusting your ways. Help me to hear and obey in all my ways. In Your Name, Amen.
Author: Katie Gibson