Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Learning obedience is tough!

{Hebrews 5: 7-9} While Jesus was here on earth, he offered prayers and pleadings, with a loud cry and tears, to the one who could rescue him from death. And God heard his prayers because of his deep reverence for God. Even though Jesus was God’s Son, he learned obedience from the things he suffered. In this way, God qualified him as a perfect High Priest....

We all suffer. We all go through rough times. We all wish that  we didn't have to, but we do. Our focus when we are going through these tough times should not be "I need to get through this unscathed" but rather "What lesson can I learn from this experience?". How we act and react to these times is important, because it determines whether or not we learn obedience.

In Hebrews it said that Jesus went through tough times. He didn't want to go through with the crucifixion (who could blame him!!?) and he pleaded with God, "Please, take this cup of suffering from me" {Luke 22:42} This isn't a sign of weakness in Jesus, it just proved that he was a man, and was facing incredible physical, mental and spiritual suffering. But his heart's attitude was "Yet I want your will to be done, not mine" and THAT was his determination. We see here in {John 12:27-28} “Now my soul is deeply troubled. Should I pray, ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But this is the very reason I came!28 Father, bring glory to your name'. He didn't want to face death - but his heart's cry was to bring glory to God. He was put to the test - and he was obedient to the Father. Jesus is a perfect example when we are tempted to resign from the will of God in times of difficulty. He persevered. 

 photo Gethsemane-Jesus-Praying_zpsb7713114.png

The test of true obedience is not found in doing all those fun little jobs, but of the dreaded assignments - the ones that you just want to escape from. {Hebrew 5:8} Even though Jesus was God’s Son, he learned obedience from the things he suffered. He didn't learn obedience through playing with the kids, and doing all the awesome miracles that he did. He learned obedience in his death.

There are benefits in our troubles! But we just have to see it that way. God is not punishing us or trying to torture us - he is allowing us to live life and we have the opportunity learn something - or not. It's completely up to us. 

Lord give me the strength to endure with grace, hope and purpose all the trials and troubles that I face. I don't want to waste any part of the agony and struggle. I don't want to come out on the other side empty handed. Help me make the most of my troubles and help me keep my heart and attitude in check. Amen

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