Yesterday we discussed God’s utmost desire and concern for us…to be in eternal and daily relationship with Him. He does want our obedience as well, but relationship is much more important to Him. My life transformed when God sent my beautiful wife, Martine, into my life…she embodied this principle perfectly to me. She loved me and loved relating to me, even with all my flaws and “disobedience” to her. She was able to forgive, and keep on telling me it’s ok, just relate to me. This revelation, not just knowing it, but actually believing it and living my life consistent with that belief dramatically changed my life. Unfortunately, it dawned on me…I guess that could have been my wife’s or kid’s frustration with me, or the Holy Spirit convicting me…that I was trapped in the same distortion with those around me. I was communicating to them that obedience was more important to me than their relationship. I was acting like kid # 1 from yesterday’s devotional instead of kid #2. It wasn’t my intention, wasn’t what I truly wanted from those close to me, but the message that was conveyed at times was about needing them to be perfect before I would relate to them. Talk about false pride… well, for me it is a battle that I fight each day and some days are better than others.
Today, think about and examine the subtle communications you give to those close to you. Your spouse, kids, parents, sibs. Are you showing them they are valuable to you just for being them? Or do you only have time for them when it fits your agenda, only are interested when it meets your needs? Do you make efforts to serve them or do you communicate that they need to “serve” you? Click here to share with the Stepping Stones community your thoughts on the message you give to others regarding Obedience vs. Relationship.
O Father, You are so amazing. Thanks for Your love and thanks for sending Martine, to be Your example to open my eyes and show me Your desire for relationship with me. I pray for wisdom, courage, and humility as I try to embody Your desire to those around me, so I will be less judgmental and more loving and accepting. In the name of the one who is pure love, Christ Jesus; and all God’s children said – AMEN!
I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”‘ And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet. And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate. For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.
Thank you for today's devotional. I cried with tears of gratitude to God. Too often I feel like I have to make everything right in my eyes before I talk to God or others. Its so false, Its like Satan keeping us from relationship which is good and I think of the father of the prodigal son and then I am humbled and awe struck that God loves me like that and more. Th last two days has reminded me its all of grace my salvation and my sanctification and its freeing to enjoy the relationship part for He knows all things anyway. I don't have that special someone anymore, and it still hurts but at the same time God is supplying me with a deeper relationship with others little by little as I step out in faith.