Hard Obedience

But what think ye? A certain man had two sons; and he came to the first, and said, Son, go work to day in my vineyard. He answered and said, I will not: but afterward he repented, and went. Matthew 21:28-29 (KJV)

(Further Bible Reading: Matthew 21:28-32)

 
“Because I know what is best for you.” If you have children you probably have said this to them when asked why they have to do something.
 
There have been times when I have said to my Heavenly Father, “Why do you want me to do this or go there? What is the point? It won’t change their hearts or they will still be as rebellious as they were before. I don’t want to go there.”

His response, “My daughter, because I know what is best for you.”
 
Many times obedience is not for the benefit of others but for the one who needs to do the obeying. I found that in situations in which I struggled to obey it was a time of growing in character, to gain more compassion, or I needed to resolve some sin issues. Other times it was that God was directing me down a path towards His ultimate purpose for me. 
 
The son in Matthew, who said ‘no’ to his father but then obeyed, may have learned a new skill in order to serve others better. Maybe he was going to see a direction he was going to take in his life. We are not told. If anything, he would have had the peace and pleasure of obeying his father. Just like the son, if we don’t obey we will never find out what God has in store for us.
 
Dear Father, when obedience is hard, give us the grace to do what you have asked. Amen.