Here we are on Day 25 of 31 Days of Truth. Over the course of these 31 days, I've admitted some dark truths and shared some joyful truths. A process of letting go has began to unfold in such beauty. God has had His way with me over this series. He has opened my eyes to areas of my life that I have been living in the darkness. He has encouraged me to share in hopes that all of you will share with others. He is creating disciples in each and every one of us.
Disciples who share Truth that is simply uncontainable. Truth so freeing that it has to be shouted from the rooftops. Truth that gives Life and shows those stuck in the darkness that there is another way to live. A way to live a life in Christ.
Once we know the Truth that gives Life, we are faced with a choice. A choice to walk alongside Truth in obedience or a choice that allows the darkness to stay as the driving force in our lives. Obedience is a practiced discipline; a choice that has to be made over and over again. Daily practices of obedience - prayer, worship, reading biblical Truths - these all play a part in our service to the One who loves us most. My small group has begun a year-long study of Masterlife by Avery T. Willis, Jr., to help us learn what it means to be disciples of Christ. In it Willis writes, "Christ does not want you to obey Him just to be good; He wants you to be obedient so that He can involve you in His mission."
I have struggled for so many years with obedience. I've felt like I don't quite measure up. That there are always other Christians out there better than me; deeper in their walk than myself. I fall asleep during quiet time and forget my memory verse. I speak of Christ's name to others but then act irrationally once I get home. I have faith and I want to go deeper, but I struggle with getting there. I liken this to when I first wanted to run in a half-marathon. I would start the training but it would never last. I was defeated and very undisciplined. But, then the girls were born early. Something inside of me changed. Something inside of me challenged myself to keep going because I knew I couldn't quit. Something inside of me loved me for the ugly mess of a person that I was and told me I was beautiful. Something inside of me began to believe in a way that I never knew was possible because it was faith without fear. This carried into my training for the triathlon. Something inside of me told myself that I could do it. So I did.
I believe that something was the Holy Spirit moving within me. Deep and gently within me, urging me to become the person Christ created me to be. In our Masterlife book, I love it when Willis says, "Christ created in His disciples a desire and an increasing ability to obey Him. They were ordinary people, but they had an extraordinary commitment to follow Christ." Below is a video of an ordinary person that is doing extraordinary things. Her name is Katie. Please listen to her story:
John 14:21 tells us that God loves us and reveals Himself to us. In The Message version, it says, "I will make myself plain to him." Today, I want our challenge to not only be about our obedience but our action. Willis says, "what good is knowledge without action?" Katie's simple actions of faith has shown millions what it truly means to be Christ's disciples. There have been three people in my church (y'all met Jacob) that have also been called to missions within this past year. They were ordinary people just like Katie who stepped out in faith and trusted God's plan for their lives. Please let this be an encouragement to all of you and not a discouragement. God has many ways for you to be obedient to Him. It might be leading a small group at church. Or, volunteering at the homeless shelter. It could be that you need to be a voice of hope at your office or in your family. It could even be calling a friend that wronged you and telling them that you forgave them. Obedience comes in all shapes and sizes.
A verse that I want to end with today is also one used in this week's reading of Grace for the Good Girl. I'd like for you to read what Emily writes:
Paul writes to the church of Galatia, "You were running a good race. Who cut in on you and kept you from obeying the truth?" (Gal. 5:7 NIV). This obedience to the truth doesn't come naturally or automatically. There is laboring. There is striving. But this striving labor has the potential to be new and light and joyful.
What is God asking you to be obedient about today? What steps are you going to take?
Till next time, let your light shine!
*The Disciple's Cross, MasterLife. Willis, Avery T. Jr.
*Grace for the Good Girl. Freeman, Emily P.
Truth #1 – The Truth
Truth #2 – I hate laundry
Truth #3 – I’m bad at memorization
Truth #4 – My dogs drive me crazy
Truth #5 – I’m scared at getting in trouble
Truth #6 –I struggle with being a mom
Truth #7 – I was nervous to start N2S
Truth #8 – I like to dance
Truth #9 – I enjoy a simple life
Truth #11 -I love a clean closet
Truth #12 – I am never satisfied with me
Truth #13 – I have a short temper
Truth #14 – I love things
Truth #15 – I sew to make memories
Truth #16 – How I define success
Truth #17 – I desire to be the best that I can be
Truth #18 – I love to decorate
Truth #19 – I feel shame daily
Truth #20 – I love blogging
Truth #21 – I have control issues
Truth #22 – Nature brings forth peace
Truth #23 – I feel guilty to rest
Truth #24 - Trying not to get discouraged