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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Obedience and God's Blessing

        “If you fully obey the Lord your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today, the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations on earth. All these blessings will come on you and accompany you if you obey the Lord your God” (Deuteronomy 28:1-2). 

        How many of us make a determined endeavor to live for Christ? Perhaps we don't because following Him means sacrifice. We want to follow Him, but it means giving up who we are for who He is. It is going to cost us. Selfishness and pride are two of the first things that must die. Following Christ also takes our time and energy. Often we make our Christian walk circumstantial—based on our feelings instead of God's desires. But if we sacrifice our feelings and follow His will in all circumstances, God's blessings “will come upon us and accompany us”. 

        It is God's desire to bless His children who make a commitment to follow Him. His blessings are His gifts which come when we sacrifice our personal desires for His. However, we must never regard obedience as a means to earn God's blessings. Then pride enters, and makes us see God's blessings as a reward for our sacrifice. Sacrificing our desires for His desires brings blessings because of God's love for us—not based on our efforts.

        His blessings are an outpouring of who He is. He is the love which gave His life for ours on Calvary. He is the love that is only completed in us when we give all of who we are to Him. His blessings flow as a result of who He is, and never because of anything we have done. “I have come,” Jesus said, “that they may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10b). God wants us to experience the fullness of our relationship with Him. 

        In these verses in Deuteronomy God's blessings are intertwined with obedience. His direction is very clear. If we fully obey the Lord our God and carefully follow all His commands, His blessings will come to us. And His blessings are the very best. Different from any humanly-inspired gift we might receive, His blessings will change our very lives. We will learn that sacrificial obedience brings His abundant life. In giving all of ourselves to Him, we shall receive all that He has chosen for us.

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