Another chance to change! Yippee!
While I was walking and praying yesterday, I got many many thoughts.
One area that really came clear to me has to do with obedience.
In life, we will go through many times of struggle. It is a part of life. Some things we struggle with over and over again and some things are temporary for that particular situation…….or are they? Oftentimes, the struggles all have a common theme or thread that may present differently in the new situation but are really the same struggle.
Think about it this way: when kids are little and they are being defiant, parents will sometimes say “oh, they are just going through a phase” and that is their way of not dealing with it by disciplining their child. As the child gets older, each stage they go through is a new phase of defiance and yet the parents who don’t discipline them are not training them to handle things differently for the next stage they go through. Life is not just a string of stages of life that are phases. We actually can grow and not just “get through the phase." Without obedience and discipline, we are just deferring to the next stage.I remember being told something along the lines of this when we first had Thalia: if you don’t handle the discipline when she’s 2, you will get another opportunity when she is 12 and so forth. The meaning was this: each new situation and stage of life is an opportunity to let God refine us and if you don't accept the refining....well, you'll get a lot more opportunities along the way!
No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. Hebrews 12:11
Obedience begins with doing something that is really hard, but it comes from the trust that God’s way will be better and will actually break through the area that you struggle with. After that obedience, if you stay close to God and His Word and stay in prayer, obedience becomes a desire out of sheer love for Him. Each new chance to obey doesn’t feel quite as torturous because you are growing in trust and you are seeing the fruit of His work in you.
I don’t know where you are in your life right now, but if you need to take a painful step of obedience, I pray that you will do it now. Don’t wait for tomorrow. Each day that you choose God’s way is going to lead you more toward His will and building your faith. If you have already taken that step of obedience, then keep stepping!
Blessings to you as you do the hard thing