Last year I had a conversation with the Lord that went like this:
Jesus: “It’s now or never. You need to take care of yourself and your health and make it a priority.”
No, Lord, I can’t. I have tried so many times and failed. I can’t fail again. Plus, food brings me joy and comfort.
Jesus: “It’s your choice.”
Five Months Later…
God, I’m miserable. I am so full of shame because I haven’t obeyed you. You feel so distant.
Jesus: I am here. I know you are hurting. I want to help.
What do I need to do?
Jesus: Remember what I asked you to do regarding your health?
Jesus: Are you ready?
Yes. I am ready to surrender and walk in obedience, but I can’t do this without you. I have tried so many times and failed.
Jesus: I am here, I will guide your steps.
Does this sound familiar? Maybe the Lord hasn’t asked you to make changes related to your health, but has He ever asked you to do something and you ignored Him, delayed responding to Him, or turned and ran in the opposite direction?
Obedience is rarely easy, in fact, most of the time it is very challenging. Anytime the Lord asks something of us, it seems our flesh wants to rise up and have the final say, it wants to claim the victory. It could be our desire for control, our disbelief, or our fear. Whatever it may be, these things keep us from saying yes to the One who loves us the most and wants what is best for us.
Have you ever stopped to think that when the Lord asks us to do a hard thing like getting up before the sun to spend time with Him, changing careers or jobs, going back to school, entering therapy, ending a relationship, giving a sacrificial monetary gift, writing a book, improving your health, that maybe, just maybe, He might see what we don’t, that the thing or person He is asking us to let go of may not be His best for us? Maybe what He is asking us to choose instead, you know, that really hard thing, might produce really good fruit in our lives? Maybe, just maybe, He knows what we need more than we do.
However, if we really, truly believed that our Heavenly Father desperately loves us with unfailing, unconditional love and He longs to give good gifts to His children, why would we choose to run away from his goodness and kindness by not obeying what He has asked of us?
Could it be that we struggle to believe His promises are really true for us? Maybe we doubt that He will meet our needs or maybe we think we have to figure out how to accomplish what He is asking of us in our own strength?
When the Lord asks us to do a hard thing, we have a choice to make, are we going to listen to our doubts and our fear or are we going to choose God’s truth? When we set the truth before us and speak it over our lives, courage, confidence, and boldness is ushered in and gives us the grace to walk in obedience. Friend, you don’t have to have all the answers of how it will all work out, you just have to know Who will work it out.
I have found that when God is asking me to do a hard thing, I have to find a scripture to stand on. We need His word, His promise to us, to assure our hearts that with Him nothing is impossible. One of my favorite scriptures is 1 Thessalonians 5:24, it states: “He who calls you is faithful, and He will do it.” This verse is such an anchor for my soul when I am saying yes to the Lord. What an incredible promise He has given to us, that if He calls us to something, He will do it! Can I get an amen?
There is such a beautiful exchange that occurs when we choose obedience. The Lord does not ever ask us to surrender something that He does not have something more wonderful to put in its place. When I chose to walk in obedience with my health, I received peace and His presence for my shame, His comfort for food’s temporary comfort, and His confidence for my fear. I would say that is a pretty great exchange rate!
Friend, obedience is not easy, and we cannot do it in our own strength, we desperately need Jesus’ help, but when we walk in obedience with Him, the gifts we receive far outweigh what we were holding on to. The riches found in saying yes to Him are deep, lasting, and beautiful.
So, I have two questions for you: What is He asking you to do today? Will you say yes?
When God asks us to do something, it isn’t always easy. But obedience and doing the hard thing is always worth it.
Mercy Multiplied is a nonprofit Christian organization that equips people to live free and stay free through Jesus Christ. To learn more about our free-of-charge residential counseling program and Outreach Services visit our website at MercyMultiplied.com.