As a child and teen, I fought my parents’ rules tooth and nail, only realizing later how much obeying them profited me.
Now, many years later, I can still see the rules hanging in a frame on my bedroom wall. I can’t remember them all, but one stands out: “No sassing.” By sass, my father meant don’t talk back. The others I can’t remember exactly, but they related to God’s moral standards.
As a nine-year-old child, I thought these rules were cumbersome. Some didn’t make any sense. And others I just wanted to break for the heck of it. Maybe because I wanted to be a bad preacher’s kid instead of a compliant one. More than likely, because of the sinful bent I was born with. Little did I know that obeying the rules would usher in the blessing of my parents, God, and others.
In this, the longest psalm in the Bible, the writer maintains that joy is the fruit of obeying God’s laws. “Joyful are those who obey his laws and search for him with all their hearts (Psalm 119:2 NLT).
He follows this verse with more than one hundred others that also proclaim the benefits of obeying the directions found in God’s Word.
While God won’t force my obedience, he will discourage disobedience with discipline.
My parents couldn’t make me obey them, even though they tried. My ability to do what I wanted was birthed in me by what God created in the first humans: free will. God wants me to obey him just as my parents reached for the same goal. In the end, it was my choice. I’ve paid for disobeying God—and for not obeying my parents.
Peace and happiness are the fruits of obeying God.
My life would have been much easier had I always obeyed my parents, but I couldn’t see that then. Obeying God’s commands puts me at peace with my Creator. This naturally leads to happiness I can’t discover anywhere else.
My relationship with my parents was always better when I did what they told me. I’ve discovered the same thing happens with me and God. If I want others to know I’m his follower, I must act like his child.
Obeying God keeps my body—his temple—holy and clean and propels me forward in my spiritual growth.
Don’t let Satan fool you into thinking that going your own way will make you happier.
Photo by Hajran Pambudi on Unsplash
- Devotions from Psalms Series: Like a Rock - May 28, 2023
- Devotions from Psalms Series: Lessons from a Waiting Room - March 11, 2023
- Devotions from Psalms Series: The Hiding Place - March 3, 2023