When you hear the word, obedience, what comes to mind?
Perhaps the last time you got a speeding ticket.
Or what you wish your kids would learn.
Maybe you think about that old hymn many of us sang growing up in church.
“Trust and obey, for there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus but to trust and obey.”
(And for those of you now singing that song for the rest of the day, sorry about that.)
The phrase “Trust and Obey” may come off trite and cliché, but the point of the phrase is nonetheless true. Trust and obedience go together. That’s why we define obedience like this:
Obedience is trusting those who lead you by doing what you’re asked to do.
Our obedience demonstrates that we trust people who are in charge, as well as, shows God we trust His plan for our lives. But we don’t always get it right, do we? And our disobedience breaks our relationship with God.
All throughout Scripture, we see how God responds to that disobedience. While there were consequences, God continued to love the world and made a way to restore our broken relationship. With that in mind, this August, we’ll walk kids through God’s One Big Story of God’s plan to rescue us by sending Jesus, His only Son, to make it possible for us to have a relationship with God again.
Obedience, we can’t get around it. Obedience is something everyone has to work on whether we’re 9, thirty-nine, or seventy-nine. We can’t wait to see what God will do in each of our lives as we discover more about what the Bible says about following and obeying God and those He’s put in authority over us.
We kick off the month at the beginning of the Bible with Adam and Eve in the Magnificent Paradise God created for them to enjoy. Yet, as we discover in Genesis 3:1-24, Adam and Eve decided that they would rather make up their own rules than follow the ones God made for them. Rather than trusting God’s plan, they trusted their own. The consequences they faced changed history.
Bottom Line: I should trust and obey even when I think my way is better. Whether we’re a child or an adult, we will face times when we think our way is better than the one set out for us. We want everyone to learn that when we trust and obey, the consequence can have lasting impact beyond ourselves.
After Adam and Eve sinned in the garden, the world was broken. This broken world continued to spiral until God had enough. In Genesis 6–8, we read the account of Noah and how he trusted and obeyed God while the rest of the world opposed God. We’ll discover how God used Noah and his family to start over.
Bottom Line: I should trust and obey even when others don’t. This simple bottom line is difficult to put into practice. God calls us to be different from the world. We will stand out to our leaders when we trust and obey when others aren’t. We might never know how God will use our obedience to point others towards Him.
For week three, we continue our journey through God’s One Big Story with Abram. As we track along with His story throughout passages in Genesis 12, 13, and 15, we’ll see how Abram dropped everything to follow God. God gave Abram a clear promise to establish a great nation from Abram’s family, but God didn’t offer a clear picture of the journey it would take for that to happen. Abram obeyed God in spite of the unknowns.
Bottom Line: I should trust and obey even if I don’t know how it will all work out. Often the big moments of obedience, like the one that happened to Abram, happen to parents or leaders and are out of kids’ control. However, we pray that kids will learn they can trust and obey with how they respond and the attitude they demonstrate throughout the situation.
In the final week of August, we’ll discover that God’s promises to Abraham are starting to come true. Abraham’s wife, Sarah, gives birth to a son. They name him Isaac. But then in Genesis 18, 21, 22, we discover that God asks Abraham to sacrifice his only son. Abraham trusted what he knew about God and obeyed believing that God would make a way of escape for Isaac. Eventually, Abraham’s family becomes a great nation and another Son would arrive on the planet. Jesus would become the ultimate way of escape for the whole world.
Bottom Line: I should trust and obey because there’s a bigger plan. Like Abraham, God might be asking us to do something that we don’t quite understand. But as we read through the Bible, we read about how God has been faithful throughout history. We can trust what we know about God to trust and obey right now.