Stepping out of God’s will may seem like a good idea because it seems easier, appears beautiful, but it is a form of disobedience. So what exactly happens when we step out of God’s will?
First and foremost, disobedience is a sin. Sin brings on so many issues that God never intended for us to experience. According to Romans 6:23, the wages of sin is death. Death in the physical sense may seem minute since it appears far off, but Spiritual death is the biggie. Why? Because Spiritual death is for eternity.
Some further consequences to stepping out of God’s will? Well, we are unprotected, we experience unnecessary troubles, sadness, confusion, pain just to name a few.
I hold Psalm 91 very near to my heart. The whole chapter is a great example of how we are protected by Christ. Here’s the catch….I have to live in His shelter, I have to make Him my refuge and the most important I have to love Him and to love Him is to obey his Word. Every instance in this chapter shows how we are sheltered by Him as long as we trust in His name! That’s all I have to do!!! So it’s clear to me that if I am not sheltered….I’m unprotected.
If we take a look at Genesis 3:14-19 we can see that because of Adam and Eve’s disobedience they ended up experiencing pain. For Eve, pregnancy became painful along with her relationship with her husband. Adam had to endure the pain of struggling to make a living. In addition, an animal had to be killed to cover themselves. The largest pain of all is that their spiritual disobedience caused physical death.
In Deuteronomy, the Israelites spent 40 years on the way to the Promise land because of disobedience when they could have arrived a lot sooner. Instead there was confusion, unnecessary trouble and a whole lot of complaining. Can you imagine?! I live in the Richmond area and have family in Newport News/Hampton and I could not imagine it having to take 40 years to drive and see them when it should only take about 1 hour. This is just 1 example how the sin of disobedience causes our goals and blessings to move further away. God is trying to put us into a position to be blessed.
Now, let’s consider what we will experience staying in God’s will (Obedience)
Most people believe that freedom is doing whatever we want, when we want. However, according to God’s Word, obedience and knowing what not to do, allows us to have freedom. Just because we are free to do something doesn’t mean we should. We are free to walk into traffic but again it doesn’t mean we should.
Some of us may know the scripture: Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need (Matthew 6:33). If we really study and pick apart this scripture we can see that there are 2 requirements of us. We must seek God’s Kingdom. This means we must know and understand His work, willingly study and go to him for everything. The other component is living righteously. Part of this is being obedient! We can’t just be seers and hearers of the word by studying; we must also DO, by being obedient.
Brings glory to God
Sometimes we may look to receive God’s blessings without ever being obedient. We should not wait to receive to obey. There are times where faith comes in to play because we may not understand or see why God is telling us to do something. We may not comprehend at the moment but it is still important to obey. An example would be when God told me to start attending another church for Sunday service. To me, this made no sense. I was concerned what people would say about me and what the whole point was. Reluctantly I followed through and God was glorified because I was blessed for following what He told me to do. I understand the Word better and I have grown spiritually. It was not on my own accord that these things came to past. God blessed me because I was obedient.
I don’t know about you but sometimes when it comes to assembling things I don’t read instructions. I mean how hard can it be to put together a bookcase? However sometimes when I’m done the piece is either missing something, does not come together correctly, isn’t sturdy or it takes entirely too long. I like a sense of accomplishment when working on things. Whether it is this blog, a skirt that I’m sewing or creating a headboard (post coming soon). Imagine how much easier it would have been if I had just followed the instructions laid out for me. The bookcase that took me 2 hours could have been a mere 30 minutes. It’s the same when it comes to staying inside of God’s will. He has a plan for all of our lives and there is so much more that we can accomplish if we stay the course. The only way to know God’s will for our lives is to know His Word. David attempted to move the Ark and because he did not ask God the correct way to move it, the progress failed.
Some of our desires are given to us by God. The problem is we try to satisfy them in the wrong way and/or at the wrong time. In these situations we are to use God’s Word by knowing and obeying scripture. Our methods against temptation (Satan’s attacks) are knowing, obeying and applying God’s Word. I’ve been an example of know the Word but not obeying and completely disregarding application. Let me tell you, it’s not worth the trouble that comes along with surrendering to temptation, in whatever aspect it may be.
Now just because we are in God’s will does not mean that it’s going to be easy all the time. We will experience some tough times because the devil wants us back and he will do anything in his power to get us to turn away from Christ. Even for a time Moses and Aaron suffered for obeying God. The good part is Christ is stronger and as long as we stay committed and dedicated to His Word we have him to lean on. HE will fight our battles. I can speak on this because sometimes I have anxiety issues. Does that make me less of a Christian? No! It means that I still have areas where Christ is pruning and improving me to be without spot or blemish for his kingdom. There are times when I’ve let my flesh (physical issues) overcome me and I was left distraught, hurt, abandoned because I was focused on my problem instead of Christ. On the other hand I have to remember that even though I may have tears and I may have doubts, I must always turn my face back unto Christ because without him I would surely be dead.
So a question I must ask myself everyday is: Am I operating within God’s Will?