OBEDIENCE IS A TEST!
"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9
Obedience to God is a test. Simply put, God gives you something to do in response to His command or direction. How well you carry out His command lets God know how faithful you will be in the future. It demonstrates whether He can trust you with more responsibility.
If you hesitate or turn back, that action on your part is a detriment to you and your soul's welfare. Not heeding God's voice is to turn your back on Him for future direction. You have no idea what you are doing when you disregard God's voice. You don't know what pitfalls you will avoid if you listen to Him. But your choice to go your own way instead of His prescribes fatality in your next steps taken on your own.
However, when you choose to listen to God and to walk on the path He has given you to go, you have brought Him on your side to successfully carry out His command. Your obedience, no matter how difficult it is at the time, demonstrates that your will is in submission to God. He loves submission to Himself. God knows He can trust you with greater responsibility and will give it to you.
Each time you obey Him, your faith in God increases. Each time you obey Him, God opens doors to knowing Him and His perfect will for your life. Each time you obey Him, you heap the favor of God on your life.
Obedience sounds easy and simple but usually it is the opposite. When David Wilkerson went into New York City to give the Gospel to the street gangs, he incurred loss. The kids ruined his car, he gave away his shoes to walk barefooted in the ghetto, and he dared to visit where they lived and did drugs--where they could easily have killed him. Wilkerson withstood opposing gang members while firmly standing on the word of God to the young adults who watched for one shred of weakness in his word and character. That would have justified their taking him out!
From Wilkerson's increased obedience as God led him, among other gang members he won Nicky Cruz, a gang leader, to Christ. Cruz has had his own ministry to reach souls for Jesus for decades.
Wilkerson founded Teen Challenge, a drug-rehab program for addicts that spread around the globe. In one of those programs, Steve Hill was born again and delivered from his addiction. After doing missionary work in South America with his wife, Jeri, whom he met at Teen Challenge, Hill preached a Father's Day message at the Brownsville Assembly of God church. Revival broke out that Sunday and lasted for years. Millions from around the world came to witness the movement and went home changed and on fire to spread the Fire of the Holy Spirit!
Wilkerson himself started a church in Times Square that continues well past his death in 2011. All because he took one step of daring obedience and left the safety of his pastorate in Philipsburg, PA to venture to NYC and the gangs! Every step he took opened doors to greater and greater ministry for God, but the cost was huge, one many others would not have been willing to pay.
Visions given to Wilkerson by the Holy Spirit were so frightening and far-reaching that he was rejected by many of his fellow ministers. His books that publicized those visions about the future have largely been banned from being reprinted, though they are being fulfilled to the letter. All because he took that first, important step in obedience to the Holy Spirit and His word.
Millions of souls have been won to Christ through the out-working of Wilkerson's ministries, but it all began because he said an initial "yes" to God.
Has God spoken to you? Has He shown you something that He wants you to do, but you hesitate to obey? Count the cost. God says it's OK to weigh the price you'll pay when you obey. But include in that sum what it will cost you if you DO NOT obey. Your loss through disobedience will be much larger than whatever it costs you to move ahead with God. Guaranteed!!
Understand, too, that with a command to obey Him comes the strength and direction to succeed in your obedience. God will not leave you alone or forsake you ever. He will shelter you under His wings of protection and bring you forward in victory to its completion.
Return to the place where God first spoke to you about what you have not obeyed. Repent and confess your sin of disobedience to God. Then pledge yourself to Him to walk in faithfulness and obedience from now on.
God will test your pledge to see if you mean what you say. But He will be with you, watching you. And He will be your Provision as you walk forward WITH Him! Open yourself to be tested today! Do not hesitate. The hour is late and God is looking for those whom He can trust. Join His army today! Begin to obey Him NOW!