My niece, Jadelyn, who is two and a half, called me for my birthday, and sadly got my voicemail instead of me. My sis, Joanna, could be heard in the background prompting her, and this is how the message went:
Say "Hi Auntie Carlee!"
Say "Happy Birthday!"
Say "I miss you!"
I iss you!!!!
Say "I love you"
I uv ewe!!!!
Jadelyn, Auntie's not there, say, "Bye-bye."
Obviously my niece's enthusiasm for calling me is adorable, touching, and sweet, and of course I absolutely saved the message. But Daniel and I both saw a much deeper lesson in her parroted conversation.
Our commitment to obedience only goes so far.
I obey the authorities, except when I want to go faster than the speed limit.
I do what my husband desires, until it seriously impedes my own.
I will follow God and His ways, unless I think He asks too much.
Tonight Daniel spoke on God's will for our lives. Contrary to how that term is often thought of, God's will according to the Bible is not a specific set of choices we will make. It is not who we marry, what career we choose, where we live, etc. Instead it is who we are, and who we are becoming. If we live His way--righteous, sanctified (set-apart from sin), pure, in submission to authority, and with Him in focus--the choices we make will follow along and we will likely be making wise choices anyways.
Jadelyn wanted to say to me all the cute things her mommy told her to say, until she didn't, and then obeying Mommy became really hard, and she naturally rebelled.
I want to live God's way, but sometimes it is hard. I want to live in His will, by being and becoming a person of Godly character, but sometimes it is hard. I know what I should do, but I naturally rebel.
However, just like Joanna knew that Jadelyn was talking to a voicemail not a real person, God knows what is best for me, and when I seek after what is false, instead of pursuing what is real, He lovingly corrects and guides me.
Even when it's hard.