Obedience To God's Voice

So they said to Jeremiah, “Let the LORD be a true and faithful witness between us, if we do not do according to everything which the LORD your God sends us by you. 6Whether it is pleasing or displeasing, we will obey the voice of the LORD our God to whom we send you, that it may be well with us when we obey the voice of the LORD our God”
— Jeremiah 42:5-7 NKJV

When going through periods of intense struggles or when facing extremely precarious predicaments in life, there is absolutely nothing wrong in trying to find the best possible solutions that will ensure a favorable outcome. As we mature in our relationship with the Father and get to know Him better, we will surely realize that there’s nothing we can hide from Him, for it is He who made us, and He knows everything about us. In loving and walking with the Father, how we start and how we finish both are vital to Him. Many who seek to walk with the Father get off to a great start, but somewhere along the way the cares of the world start to creep in and so way on their minds that they succumb to the pressure. When this happens, deception enters in, causing them to doubt both the Father and His promises, so that in the end they walk away, offended at Him. When all natural resources are consumed and all options for solutions are exhausted, we come back to the Father, humbled and willing to hear what He has to say, whether it be pleasing or displeasing to our ear. We are willing to make the change for the better. However, the test is whether we can maintain and become stewards of what He says, or go back to our normal ways.

One thing that gets many people into a bind is that they want to hear the Father speak only so that they can get out of whatever struggle or pain they are going through. Many times, the troubles people go through are the result of their own doings, but there are also many occasions when troubles come seemingly without cause or invitation, and the reason, like the trouble itself, is beyond them. If we approach our relationship with the Father only to seek to absorb or eliminate what we go through, then we have not learned or understood the full and true value of having a relationship with Him. This is an immature mindset. Relating properly and maturely to the Father requires moving beyond a needs-based mindset. There are valuable lessons that we go through with Him that, when internalized, become a tremendous source of strength for us. This very same strength will empower us to withstand the pressures of life so that we don’t cave in or surrender to “victim” thinking. The more mature we become in Him, the more wholeheartedly we trust everything He says, whether it is pleasing or displeasing, because obedience is a core value in His Kingdom. Even if His word displeasing, we know that, because of His love for us, the final outcome will always be in our favor.

The word “if” is a conjunction, a joining word. This unassuming two-letter word is the same word the devil presented to Christ at the end of His forty-day fast in the wilderness. “If you are the son of God,” he said, “then you will do this.” At every juncture of his cunningness to mislead Christ, the Son of Man and Son of God withstood him and responded from a posture of being led by the Father. When we come before the Father, our language attitude often is, “If you do this, then I will obey you…” Our Father, in His grace and mercy, welcomes the conversation, but ultimately, we should never come to Him as one laying out conditions for Him to abide by, conditions such as “if.” Anyone who comes to Him must come before Him in faith, knowing that He is a rewarder of them who diligently seek Him. We come to Him from the place of knowing that He already knows our needs even before we ask, and takes care of them. We realize that there are no shortcuts to the things He says, so we choose to follow through in obedience, knowing that He totally is for and not against us.