Radical Obedience

I have had the fortunate experience of being taught by two men who I believe are sincerely lead by the Holy Spirit in what they have to say on Sunday mornings: Jonathan Martin of Renovatus, and Rob Singleton of Southbrook Church.  While my family attended Renovatus for a while, in the end we found it far too difficult to trek 45 minutes to church every Sunday.  Instead, we felt called to attend Southbrook.  I still listen to Jonathan by podcast, and I hear Rob every Sunday.

I have had the privilege the past few weeks of having God speak to me through several events in the Sullivan home.  My daughter, who at 14, has decided that she needs to save the world, has been asking for ways in which to make a difference in the world around her.  Not satisfied with simple things, like helping out in the nursery at church, she wants to do “something important.”  Try as I might, I can’t really give her any really good ideas, because I don’t know of “anything important” that needs to be done within driving distance.  Aside from rescuing kittens from trees, we are not in the most exciting area of the world, and there are not a lot of “great big things” for us to do in our world.

While listening to Rob’s sermon on being a Wimpy Christian, I was pricked in my spirit, realizing that we too often live our lives as weak, unwilling, unempowered psuedo-servants of the most High God.  We walk through life, when Paul described life as a race to be run.  We fail and falter, never quite manning up in the process of life to be what God has called us to be- unfaltering, unwavering men of God given a treasure in earthen vessels with power that is not from us.  I am looking forward to hearing the continuation of Rob’s message this coming Sunday.

I was further reminded of a sermon I heard from Jonathan, where he highlights the story of the feeding of the five thousand.  In the sermon, Jonathan exhorts us to remember that no matter how small the offering we have to give, give it.  God specializes in using the little bit we give him to accomplish great things.

A few days ago, I felt so strongly that God said this to me, that I could not help but right it down.  The little that God asks for is “Radical Obedience.”  It is the type of obedience that led Abraham out of Ur, that led David to fight Goliath, that ultimately led Jesus to the cross to die for us.  God may not be asking us to do these things, but He is certainly asking us to be willing to do whatever it takes.  It is in that giving of ourselves, that act of “radical obedience,” that God is allowed to make the changes in our lives to move us from wimpiness to warriorhood.  God did not make us only to be disappointed by our weakness and flaws.  He made us in love and kindness, all too willing to grant us the same spirit that Christ promised the disciples, if we only accept.

We have a few loaves and fishes we can offer God.  We have something that we can place before the altar that will transform us, and shape us in ways we will never know unless we submit our loaves and fishes of radical obedience.  Radical obedience is a “great big thing,” because it is the one thing we can give God that brings glory to Him, and is not focused on centering the glory upon ourselves.

Do you feel the need to do “Great Things?” Start with offering the five loaves and two fishes of radical obedience to the Lord.  You may not see the inherent value in the giving of yourself to God, but God can take those small loaves and fishes, and do some crazy amazing things with it!


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