Sunday, May 18, 2008

Trust and Obey

The Christian life can really be boiled down to two words: trust and obey.

I have run across this idea in my reading and e-mail correspondence several times in the past week.

First there is the matter of trust. Trust is the means by which we enter into a relationship with the Almighty, Holy, Sovereign God who created and sustains the universe. By His grace, we place our faith in Jesus Christ to forgive us for our sins and to receive His righteousness as our own. By faith, we become a child of God and can now call Him Father. Trust is also the means by which we live our daily lives. The same God who saved us from our sin and its consequences – eternal separation from God – also promises His daily presence and provision. Each day, we trust that He is who He says He is and will do what He said He will do.

As children of the Father, we have confidence in Him and His Word. We do not place our trust in ourselves, other people, things, or our circumstances. All of these will eventually let us down, but Jesus never fails! He never changes.

The second part is obey. We obey, not to obtain God’s favor – that is accomplished only by trusting in Jesus Christ and His finished work on the cross at Calvary – but because, as His children, we delight in doing His will. Obedience brings joy.

Our obedience to the Father is often manifested (required) in other personal relationships. As children obey their parents, as church members obey their spiritual leaders, as citizens obey their government leaders, they are obeying God.

These two words are familiar to many because of an old hymn penned by John H. Sammis.
He wrote:

When we walk with the Lord in the light of His Word,
What a glory He sheds on our way!
While we do His good will, He abides with us still,
And with all who will trust and obey.

Trust and obey, for there’s no other way
To be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.

Not a shadow can rise, not a cloud in the skies,
But His smile quickly drives it away;
Not a doubt or a fear, not a sigh or a tear,
Can abide while we trust and obey.

Not a burden we bear, not a sorrow we share,
But our toil He doth richly repay;
Not a grief or a loss, not a frown or a cross,
But is blessed if we trust and obey.

But we never can prove the delights of His love
Until all on the altar we lay;
For the favor He shows, for the joy He bestows,
Are for them who will trust and obey.

Then in fellowship sweet we will sit at His feet.
Or we’ll walk by His side in the way.
What He says we will do, where He sends we will go;
Never fear, only trust and obey.

In any circumstance that comes our way, whether it be a financial pressure, a health problem, an interpersonal conflict, or anything, we have no reason to fear. We only need to be reminded of Who our Heavenly Father is and to trust and obey.

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