Radical Obedience


As I key these words the rain is steadily falling outside. It is November 8, 2011 and if you are in Meridian, Mississippi it is also raining where you are. Thought much lately about building an ark? I know that is a question which won’t require much contemplation to come to an answer. That is, unless you are looking for a great example of radical obedience. Just give this a little thought. Rain had never before been seen on the earth. The Bible tells us that the grounds were watered by mist which would cover it as it was needed, so Noah is going to build an ark in preparation for something he had never seen. That takes radical faith. It requires radical obedience. Three times in chapters six and seven of Genesis it says Noah did as God commanded, so it must be a very important point of faith. Noah did ALL that the Lord commanded, not just a part…ALL.

To move in obedience when the Lord directs us takes faith minimally. I often think about the struggle between faith and its counterparts of doubt and fear. Proverbs 3:5 tells us to, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will direct your paths.” If Noah had been leaning on his own understanding the ark would not have been built. So often we have trouble believing that the Holy Spirit will actually speak to us; not so much because we don’t believe the Holy Spirit, but more so because we have difficulty with the thought “He will speak to “me”. When in reality He is speaking to you, directing your path, leading your way, and working in you to perform His will.

There is a hero inside of you and when faith and radical obedience meet in a holy embrace, your life is changed and your destiny begins to unfold. I am certain Noah was not thinking about me the morning he began his unusual building project, but here I am centuries later writing about his faith. Destiny will not only impact your life it will impact the lives of others maybe even generations from now.

Radical obedience and faith not only create destiny they require taking risks. Very often the thought of the risk involved in taking a step of faith discourages us from the initial move toward obedience. Unconsciously we take risks when we drive our car, or go to an ATM or any number of tasks. We take risks when we witness to our unsaved neighbors and family, but without taking those risks faith does not grow. We are hindered by the fear of risking reputation, failure or rejection. Christ is said to have had no thought for His reputation as He ministered among and to the people He saw as “sheep without a shepherd”. Nothing God will ever ask us to do can compare with the great price Jesus paid in His most radical act of obedience…the cross of Calvary.

So what is the outcome of this risk taking, radical obedience and faith? Salvation, deliverance, healing and changed lives for those who see Jesus Christ alive in you, as you live for Him… Peace that passes all understanding, joy unspeakable and full of His glory and the knowledge that you have done what pleases Him, to name only a few others. Ultimately, to hear “Well done” from Him…enter into the fullness of the joy laid up for you by my Father”. Wow!! What greater reward is there? What an amazing God! What an amazing opportunity! What is God asking you to do? Will you be radically obedient? I pray you will be empowered by His Spirit to say yes! So, go out live radically, fully alive, take risks, do good…stay in love with God!!

Grace and Peace in Christ Jesus our Lord!
Pastor Kathy

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