How often have you heard the voice of the Lord telling you, very clearly to carry out a specific task to glorify Him? Take a moment to recall your response and obedience. Did you carry it out immediately without wavering? Did you hesitate out of fear? Or did your fear ultimately win the struggle between being too scared of failure, and fear of disappointing God?
Would you believe as a believer, we have all been there? Truth be told, we have all been guilty of failing to carry out our duties as soldiers of Christ; likely more than once...it is how we recover from this disobedience that measures our true character as Christians.
Let me remind you of an example in Acts chapter 9. It is here where we read back to back the response of two Godly, obedient servants of Christ; both who, in their fear obeyed God. As the unlikeliest candidate to be used of God, Paul’s obedience to the voice of the Lord was not only immediate, but having not even know Jesus before his encounter, submitted to His voice without as much as even a next step to take.
And he said, “Who are you, Lord?” And he said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. But rise and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do.”
Comparatively, God called Ananias about the same time to pray for this man Saul. In his fear, he knew God’s protection went before him:
But Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much evil he has done to your saints at Jerusalem...But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel.
What if these two men had failed to act out of their fear of death or failure? What if they had not obeyed God so swiftly? Can you imagine how different the history of the First Century Church would have been?
As vessels of Christ, there is much to learn from Ananias, Saul, and their experiences with obedience. Chances are, when God gives you a task to complete, there is more in it than just the satisfaction of being obedient to our Lord; so much more, that one obedient act could multiply into many lives being touched, even if you never personally see the earthly repercussions.
Additionally, obeying the voice of God leads to more obedience...once you prove to God He can trust you to obey His voice to bring Him glory, you will be amazed at all the other tasks He begins to trust you to carry out. The truth remains as simple as this: it is never beneficial to ignore God’s instruction. Next time you hear God calling you to obedience, step out in your faith, just as Ananias and Saul did, and you will be amazed how God will use your swift obedience.