Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Radical Obedience

I tried to be obedient when I was growing up. I listened to what my parents said and obeyed (most of the time). As a young child I obeyed out of awe and some amount of fear (they were bigger then me) and as I became a teenager I tested the boundaries and in some respects flat out disregarded my parents instructions. I was radically disobedient. I didn’t understand that my parents were on my side.  That other then God my parents loved me more then anyone and that they wanted me to be happy. They were old and old-fashioned and didn’t understand what it was like to be me. And yes mom, you were right, I do understand now that I am a mom. 

Obedience means to obey or the willingness to obey.

Radical is “departing markedly from the usual or customary, extreme”.

Moses and Noah were both radically obedient.

John the Baptist was radically obedient.

Mary, David, Saul/Paul, Timothy, Stephen, Mother Theresa, Billy Graham,
Matt and Martha Fry, all have been radically obedient in their own time.

Wait, who are Matt and Martha Fry?

My pastor and his wife.

Radically obedient? How?

Where our church stands now was a tobacco field.

But my pastor had a vision and a desire to be radically obedient. Was it easy? No. Are there still struggles? Yes. Are there times when things happen that others may not understand? Yes.

But that is what being radical is all about.

Listening to what God is telling you to do and DOING IT no matter what “the world” says.

Matt Fry was willing to be radically obedient to our Heavenly Father and Martha, his wife, was willing to be obedient to her husband’s calling and vision. They both trusted God completely and it was through that obedience Matt and Martha opened a door for hundreds of people to come to know God and to understand salvation and redemption. Because Matt was willing to obey God’s instruction for his life, even if he didn’t understand it, God, through him, is able to reach people that would still be walking around in the dark, lost, and in despair.

I know this to be true because I was one of the lost. My husband and daughter were surrounded in that darkness as well. Did we know what was missing at the time? No. Did we have any idea a little over 3 years ago that we would be making the changes and taking the steps we are today? No, not in a million years. But you know what?

God did.

God knew that what was once woods, and then a field growing tobacco and cotton, would one day be a house where Christians would be planted and would grow and here, 10 years later lives are being changed, impacted, marriages restored, children and grandparents giving their lives to Jesus, the harvest is ripe.

Is our church perfect? No, thank God, if it was, they wouldn’t let sinners in and then it wouldn’t be a church, it would be a country club, and I don’t get to love my Jesus at the country club. If perfect is what you are looking for you will not find it in ANY church. But what you will find in churches that are living for God are people that are radically obedient. Not just in the church that I love, but in churches all over the world, God’s cool like that, He can be everywhere at once, as long as He’s welcome.

Are you obeying the call God has placed on your heart to become radically obedient? It can start small my friend. Saying yes to daily quiet time. If you have never had that with our Father, then this is radical obedience. Are you faithful with your tithe? Giving your tithe, first fruits, for a lot of us that is radical obedience. Are you serving at your church? Opening a door, helping with the children, parking the cars, these are all forms of obedience and if it is stepping out of your comfort zone, then my friend it is radical. And once God sees that you will be obedient to Him, then what He asks will stretch you and you will grow and you will be working WITH God to further His kingdom. 

Not everyone is called to start a church. Not everyone is called into the mission field.


Everyone is called to be obedient. Make it radical and see what God will do.

Thank you Matt and Martha Fry, thank you staff and leaders, and volunteers at C3 church for opening a door, pouring a cup of coffee, giving a hug, saying a prayer, singing a song, and just wrapping your arms around every person that walks through the door. Because you each have said "I will do it" God’s love is growing and touching lives in ways you will never know this side of heaven. All because you were radically obedient to Him.

1 comment:

Kim said...

You truly are amazing person. Thank you for your post.