“If you love me, you will obey what I command.” – John 14:15
God wants us to obey Him the first time. His instructions and lessons always entail what is best for us, so why are we so hard-headed and stubborn?
As a teenager, my mom would tell me, “You don’t believe fat meat is greasy.” This was a common phrase in our household which indicated one had to learn a lesson the the hard way in order to avoid a mistake. Whenever my mom forewarned me about a situation, or offered her advice, I knew she was probably right, however, I just had to find out things myself. These adventures, often led to unnecessary bumps, bruises and embarrassing life situations.
The Israelites were similar in their failure to heed instruction. In Exodus 16, we learn that after grumbling and complaining to Moses about the lack of food choices in the desert, God heard their complaints and brought forth bread from heaven to satisfy their appetites. This food demonstrated a clear signal to the Israelites that God, was indeed God, and despite the wilderness, He would provide for their every need. Can you imagine traveling the desert, eating dry, bland foods day after day and then able to wake up to fresh food — such as manna; which the Bible says tasted like honey flavored biscuits.
What an incredible blessing for the Israelites; yet with this blessing, God attached a few rules:
No one was allowed to collect more than a day’s ration -each day morning they were to collect just enough food for that day, as God didn’t want any hoarding. On the sixth day, the people were to get enough food for that day and the next day which was the Sabbath, because the Sabbath was to be a day of rest, and no food would come from heaven on this day. Some followed God’s instructions regarding the food, others didn’t.
The disobedient individuals refused to take God at His word and decided to test things out for themselves. Those who disobeyed God and hoarded food, found their surplus destroyed, rotted and infested by maggots. Those who disobeyed by going out on the Sabbath to collect food returned home empty handed. Imagine the looks on the faces of the food hoarders, pinching their noses due to the smell of rotted food, and those “Sabbath-hunters” returning home with bewildered looks and empty food baskets. God meant exactly what He said.
It hurts God’s heart when we fail to obey His instruction. Numbers 23:19 tells us that God is not human and therefore does not lie, nor does He change His mind or promise something that He will not fulfill. When God gives us instructions, it is important that we obey Him the first time.
We must submit our flesh to the will of God, and refuse to put God’s word through our own personal tests to see if God is serious. Fat meat IS greasy in all things concerning God. God loves us so much that He only wants what is best. We may not always understand all of God’s ways but because we love Him, we must choose to obey.
Kacie Starr Long is an author, speaker, talk show host and the proud wife of Alfred T. Long, Sr. she and her husband serve as campus Pastors with Influence Church. Stay connected with Kacie at: www.InspiredOverflow.com.