2000-05-26 - God's Love Language
A few days ago, on a walk with our dog Pierre, I noticed that he was running too closely to the road, so I yelled out his name. Even though he is a spirited little creature, he turned around and came bouncing back to me. I hugged him and said "you obeyed me; you love me." And then it hit me: That is God's love language, too. We sometimes are quick to say that we love Jesus. If we really mean business about showing that love, that's what it's all about--obedience.
John 14:15 "If you love me, you will obey what I command." (NIV)
That obedience should be given out of love, appreciation and a desire to please -- and not done begrudgingly. If you are a parent, think how you feel when your child obeys you simply to avoid punishment, because he "has to." Don't you prefer the obedience to be served with a smile, and a loving heart?
But what if God is asking us to do something we really detest? How can we change our hearts? It's a trick question; we cannot change our hearts. But God can. If we are obeying half-heartedly, we need to talk to God about it. He is delighted to change our hearts and to render us eager to obey Him.
Phil 2:13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose. (NIV)
God will enable us to do what He calls us to do.
In addition, we need to remind ourselves of God's motives in asking for our obedience. All His requirements are based on His unsurpassed wisdom and His profound love for us. He desires what is best for us. If we reread passages about Christ's suffering for us, that is a poignant reminder of God's motives.
I hope you will join me in working on giving God the cheerful, loving obedience that He deserves.