Obedience: a response to an invitation.

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My wife and I are in a transition. We are in a season where God is asking us to step into an unknown situation, an act of obedience completely based on a step of faith. Now, those who know us know that this is not an uncommon place that we find ourselves. We are often doing wild and wonderful things in the pursuit of God’s heart. From moving across the world to go to a ministry school, to quitting jobs, to moving to Phoenix, to moving back to Redding California. 

Our commitment to always says ‘yes’ has led us into places where we have nothing but our faith and the promise of his Word to lean on. Stepping into the unknown with the Lord comes from a deep sense of knowing, it resonates from deep within our spirit. A knowledge that this move is important and right. It’s a complete act of obedience and trust to His call on our lives.

God has always been faithful and every step-in obedience has worked out in ways that we could never imagine. His goodness to us is without question. We know that the most solid ground we can be on is that of following the voice of the Lord…but it’s not always comfortable. We find that these situations don’t get any easier to lean into. We long for stability. Each new step comes with something new that stretches us, something He wants us to learn.

With each experience of obedience, I have treated the risk as an item to trade with the Lord. I have acted as though my risk will move his heart closer to mine, as if I had initiated the pursuit. He is moved by his love and pride in us. When we risk, it brings him so much joy. But an act of obedience is not God testing to see how much you love him.

Recently, I was feeling stressed about this next big step, and I was asking him if my act of obedience was enough for Him. During this time, He spoke clearly to me. He reminded me that He initiated the step, asking us to follow Him. This wasn’t my idea. I realized this is less of a spontaneous self-initiated act of faith, but an intentional response to an invitation from the Lord to come close to Him and His plan for us. It is a moment where he stretches out his hand and says  “There is something wonderful for you here if you want to come this way”. It’s an invitation to Him. An invitation to know His heart more and to see how He sees you.

In every new season, the greatest act of obedience is not a barter of “risk” with God hoping it moves His heart. It’s a response to an invitation to know and experience the love He has for us on a deeper level. Risk always feels less risky when we know God has invited us into something where the greatest outcome is always guaranteed, knowing His love deeper.

The Travis Green song “Respond’ says “You see all. Still, you’re searching for someone who will respond. I’m right here”. This lyric reminds me God has always and will always pursue first. Obedience is a response to a guaranteed outcome; it’s a “yes” to an invitation from a Father who loves.

Written by Cein Bryne, RNW intercessory team leader

Homework:

Take some time and seek an invitation. What is He inviting you into that has felt scary and risky in the past?

How do you see risk? Do you see as a barter of “work” for “love”, or do you see it as an opportunity to respond to what was promised to you?

Spend time journaling out places where you have felt that invitation into obedience and how it positively impacted your relationship with the Lord.

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