“Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” ~Hebrews 12:2b
I can still remember when I was a young boy and spending most of my time outside playing with my friends in the woods and open fields. I’d come home and the battle would begin to get me into the bath tub. My Mom would demand that I get my filthy behind in that tub right now. In which I would protest with “I don’t feel like it”. After all the kicking and screaming, once I heard the tub filling up it was just a matter of time. Funny thing is, once I got in, with all my toys and the bubbles I didn’t wanna get out, it’s where I belonged.
Sometimes it’s the same with my walk with the Lord, I know what I’m supposed to be doing and where I’m supposed to be but I don’t always “feel like it”. There’s a misconception I hear when it comes to obedience, I hear people say, “if you can’t do it with a cheerful heart, then don’t do it at all”. I disagree, I know God loves a cheerful giver but if I wait until I’m in the mood to serve God I won’t be doing much. If I only go to Church when I “feel like it” my attendance will be way down.
The example Jesus displays according to Hebrews chapter 12 shows Him putting aside His own desires and going to the cross for “The Sake of The Cause”. We see in the garden where Jesus petitions with the Father “O My Father, if this cup cannot pass away from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done” (Matt 26:42b). I know we will never have to do anything to save mankind. It’s an attitude of seeing the big picture and being obedient to what you know God desires of us. I believe when we do this, it’s like the bathtub illustration, we will be where we belong and the joy we desire comes with it. I can’t tell you how many times I didn’t feel like fellowshipping, going to church or attending Bible study but once I got there I didn’t wanna leave.
Even when it comes to service for the Lord, I know that people will say partial obedience is disobedience but I disagree. In Matthew 21:28-31 Jesus uses an example of two brothers when asked to work in the field, the first said “I will not” but later did and the second said “I will” but never did. This is an illustration given to the Jews that represents the ones who confessed to follow God but didn’t and those who didn’t follow God but later did.
The point is even if I don’t “feel it” that there’s a bigger and greater cause that we owe a huge debt to and if I sit around and wait until “the Spirit moves me” there’s not a whole lot gonna get done. We are called to respond when the opportunity arises and stop making excuses, believing that the greater cause is worth it. Then I believe the “joyful heart” will follow. As men we need to be challenged, too many times I’ve allowed excuses to hinder my obedience. It’s not that God will love you more if you do it, it’s a matter of being where you belong, “For The Sake of The Cause”.
Written by Rob Russomano: Rob is married to Terri, a graduate of the Colony of Mercy and a full time staff member at America’s Keswick. He is also available as a speaker of the grace of God with a message of Hope for church events.
Daily Quote: “In today’s economy there is little to hope for the future, however, God is never caught off guard or by surprise. God knows the future.” ~Jack Wellman
This Week’s Verse to Memorize:
17 The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears,
And delivers them out of all their troubles.
18 The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart,
And saves such as have a contrite spirit.
19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
But the Lord delivers him out of them all.