The Cost of Obedience
God is not safe. As a matter of fact, when He asked my husband and me some time ago to step out on a faith-tightrope onto a particular calling, we found that He had removed all security nets from under our feet as well. No plan-b or back-ups were available. It quickly became obvious to us, that without God we could never succeed in this call. One night my husband stopped as we were walking to the house and as he looked into the star-filled sky, he prayed out loud. “God, if you are not going with us, we will die!”
He was right, God was asking us to the impossible. We had to make a choice to trust the One who flung those stars into existence, or continue to walk in our own seemingly safe ways. We decided to obey.
When I look at the Word of God, I find it has much to say about the cost of obedience. Followers of Christ always have been and always will be paying a high price for walking in His steps. His demands on his first disciples were harsh. He asked them to leave what they knew best, nets and all. God did not promise them comfort and safety then, nor does He give it to us today.
However, what we do find is a God who is near, nearer than our own breath. He promises Himself, injected deep into our dire need.
In our weakness He becomes a strong tower.
In our sickness He becomes the healer.
In our insecurity he becomes a sure foundation.
In our foolishness He becomes our wisdom.
In our desperation He becomes our hope.
In our darkness He becomes Light.
Surrender requires giving our all. Obedience cost Christ everything. Obedience will cost us as well. Following Jesus, in an increasing hostile world, requires boldness wrapped in His love. It requires that we give up our rights as citizens of this world and embrace our rights as heavenly ones. With the Lord of Heaven and Earth on our side, we can dare to surrender all.
“Safe?” said Mr. Beaver;
“don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you?
Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe.
But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
I will be with you; And through the rivers,
they will not overflow you
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be scorched,
Nor will the flame burn you.”