My dad had many stories of the days in the early 1900’s when his mother was a girl living in a small Kentucky county, filled with hard-working farm families. When her parents had to be away from their farm, Miss Mary would come a tend to the brood of 13 children. She ran a tight ship and what she said, went! Grandma never disobeyed her orders, but several of her older siblings were willing to take the risk. When caught in mischief by Mary, the guilty party would go out back and cut a switch so Miss Mary could swat him or her for their misbehavior. Round two occurred when the parents returned home! Miss Mary’s word was always right.
Obedience can be a challenge; we are independent people. The promise to obey is often left out of marriage vows today, classrooms often see the effects of low obedience to authority, and messages from the pulpit suggesting obedience to Christ are not the most popular. Obedience often comes about through the pain of unpleasant consequences, but obeying God’s words out of love and trust is the best reason to do so:
“If you [really] love Me, you will keep and obey My commandments.” John 14:15
God always loves us—no matter what. Our failures cannot change that perfect love He holds for His followers. When we fail in some way, perhaps the question we should ask ourselves instead is, “am I loving Him back?” Loving Him for Who He is and obeying out of that love is the best of reasons.