May 5 I Sunday
1 Kings 19-20
“And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!” —Philippians 2:8
When we are assigned a task and are asked to obey it, do we make our decision to obey based on how difficult the task is? It is easy to obey if the task is simple, but what if it costs us something? When Jesus described His mission on earth, He tells us, “For I have come down from heaven not to do My will but to do the will of Him who sent Me” (John 6:38). Throughout Jesus’s life, this was His constant criteria: “What is the will of My Father?” The only agenda Jesus had was the agenda His Father had for Him. Jesus was not only obedient to the Father, but His obedience was perfect.
We may have a certain measure of obedience because we recognize that God knows better than we do about some things. But the question is whether our obedience extends to the same obedience as Jesus, who was obedient “to death—even death on a cross!” (Philippians 2:8).
Never doubt for a moment the willingness of Jesus to go to the cross. In the Garden of Gethsemane, the night before He was crucified, Jesus said, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from Me. Yet not as I will, but as You will” (Matthew 26:39). Jesus pleaded to the Father for a different solution but in the end, He was willing to be obedient to God’s will. What Jesus is saying is: “Your will overrides, at every point, my convenience, comfort and satisfaction.”
Paul urges us to have more than a “fair-weather obedience,” where we only obey when God’s will is nice and good for us, for there will be times when obeying God’s will must require us to sacrifice in some way. Obedience—even though it may not be as costly as it was for Jesus—always yields satisfaction. Because of Jesus’s obedience, “God exalted Him to the highest place and gave Him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord” (Philippians 2:9-11).
When we make the decision to live in obedience to Him, we put aside our own agenda as we seek His will for our life. Whatever it costs us to get right with God and live in obedience to Him is worth it. It is Christ-like obedience that leads us to discover a Christian life that satisfies, so may the obedience of Christ inspire us to follow and trust God’s plan for our life.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, no matter what is happening all around me, I have found refuge in You. Whatever it is You want in my life, You are my strength and I depend on You. You are my master and I obey You.