Monday, September 5, 2016

Obedience: Moving Past Devastation and into Obedience

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Obedience: Moving Past Devastation and into Obedience
Image Credit:  Azgan Mjeshtri - Public Domain Image - via Freely Photos
Last week, in our Wednesday night ladies Bible study, Beth Moore led us through “moving past our devastation.”  This week, she encouraged us to “move on with brave obedience.”  In our first lesson, we learned what happens to us when we stay behind our devastation too long.  When we can’t seem to move past it, we can become bitter.

Obedience:  Moving Past Devastation and into Obedience

See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God, that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled. – Hebrews 12:15
We had to come to the realization that God allows good things and bad things to happen to both good and “not-so-good” people.
He causes the sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. – Matthew 5:45b
We learned that if we allow our disappointment to remain “untreated,” we can fall into a state of disobedience.  To move forward out of our devastation, we must be obedient to God.

David was devastated at the death of Uzzah, so much that he could not continue to move the ark on into Israel.  Instead, the ark remained in the house of Obed-edum for three months.  During that time, God blessed the house of Obed-edum and David moved past his devastation and into obedience before God.

On our second day, we addressed the fact that God’s punishment for Uzzah seems harsh.  God is not harsh.  He is just.  He is holy.  He had previously given specific directions for carrying the Ark of the Covenant.  His detailed, specific directions were not followed as He had commanded, resulting in Uzzah’s death.  God is holy.  You and I now live in an “age of grace.”  We don’t have to paint our doorposts with blood or sacrifice animals to make atonement for our sins.  We do worship the same God.  He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.  He never changes, nor do his commandments.  He still expects obedience, but Jesus was our sacrifice.  He is our Passover.  He is now our high priest.  He is our spiritual rock and our manna from Heaven.

In moving past our devastation and into obedience, God’s plan for a “new day” in our lives becomes more visible to us.
Every time God has a new day of sorts dawning in my life, He also demands a new reverence from me.  Every time He has a new place to take me, He has something new about His holiness He seems to want to show me.  God seems to say, “This revelation involves a responsibility that can only come with reverence.” – Beth Moore
In our third lesson for the week, Beth teaches us about the importance of cooperating with God so that He can take us so far from where we have been that we can respond like David did, “Who am I, Oh sovereign Lord, and who is my family that you have brought me this far? – 2 Samuel 7:18

After David moved past his devastation and into a state of obedience, he acknowledged God’s blessings on him and he danced.  David moved from devastation to dancing.

One of my favorite quotes from this session is this one:
When the love of God calls forth a love for God in a heart of brokenness, it spills forth in a way no happy heart can gush.  I can remember the exact moment I realized I was going to survive a season of loss and grave defeat.  With the pain still present in my heart but strumming now in clear, acoustical praise, I felt oddly more alive than I’d ever been in my life.  The scars on my battered soul no longer appeared to me as random slashes but suddenly transfigured into engravings of unexpected praise and thanksgiving.” – Beth Moore.
In the last session of this study here in week four with Beth Moore, she recounts two main points and then offers the third.

We’ve got to get past our devastation.

We’ve got to return to obedience.

We’ve got to be courageous enough to receive God’s blessings.

God desires to bless you!

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