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Be Gone, Begrudging

Every Saturday when I was a kid was Clean Your Room Day. For the most part, I did my best but many times I did just enough to get by. I wouldn't take the books off the shelves before dusting. I wouldn't go out of my way to help my sister clean her half of the room. I obeyed my parents, but I obeyed them grudgingly and lazily. Many of us have the same attitude toward God’s instructions as I did toward my parents.

My parents wanted me to clean my room so I could learn discipline, responsibility and respect. Likewise, God asks us to do things so He can teach us something in the process.

In Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, we see the story of Joseph asking Pilate for Jesus’s body. In order to do what God asked him to do, Joseph -- a member of the council -- had to out himself as a Jesus follower and confront Pilate, a powerful, intimidating man. Joseph could have sent one of his servants to get Jesus’s body. He could have placed Jesus in any old hole in a rock. But Joseph went into an uncomfortable situation, retrieved Jesus’s body, prepared it for burial and placed it in his own brand-new tomb. He obeyed wholeheartedly and selflessly.

Imagine how Joseph felt after walking away from the tomb that day. How much more confidence did he have the next time God prompted him to do something bold? Like Joseph, we all have next steps to take in our relationship with Jesus, and many of them will cause us to get dirty or uncomfortable. Will you do just enough to get by, or will you go out of your way to selflessly obey?

Reflect:

  • What has God been asking you to do? Are you obeying thoroughly and cheerfully, or haphazardly tucking things under the bed?
  • When was the last time God asked you to do something uncomfortable? What did you learn as a result?

The Empty tomb

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