You are one person. It seems you have few resources. What can you possibly do to accomplish great things for the Kingdom of God? On our own, without God, we can achieve little. However, with God, we can achieve much — maybe not in our lifetime, but certainly across generations. For God is all about multiplying little into innumerable things across multiple generations. All we need to do is prayerfully follow His lead — to respond to His call in obedience.
There are many examples in the Bible of one person obediently following God even when things look impossible. Often they never lived to see God’s promise fulfilled, but we get to read about it in later chapters and books of the Bible. The faith in Jesus we are offered today has been passed to us across the generations of God’s faithful. We are beneficiaries of the obedience of countless faithful across the millenniums. Abram is one example. He was but one man. He and his wife were alone in a foreign land. They were unable to have children. Yet God tells him:
Now lift up your eyes and look from the place where you are, northward and southward and eastward and westward; for all the land which you see, I will give it to you and to your descendants forever. I will make your descendants as the dust of the earth, so that if anyone can number the dust of the earth, then your descendants can also be numbered. Arise, walk about the land through its length and breadth; for I will give it to you.” (Genesis 13:14-17, NASB).
He had no army; no children; not even a piece of land to call his own. But God promises to give him all the land he can see — that his descendants will be too numerous to count. At that moment, God shows Abram a future he cannot see — a future he cannot possibly make happen on his own. He responds by moving his tent to “the oaks of Mamre, which are in Hebron, and there he built an altar to the LORD.” He worships the Lord. Abram did see the birth of his son Isaac, but not the ultimate lineage to David and Jesus.
God calls us to obedience, even if it doesn’t make sense to us. If we respond to His call, we may never see the full result in our lifetime. It is not a blind faith, but a faith that sees God’s greater purpose; a faith that trusts in God’s wisdom over our own instincts.
© 2022, CGThelen
So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations; from David to the deportation to Babylon, fourteen generations; and from the deportation to Babylon to the Messiah, fourteen generations. – Matthew 1:17
Truly I say to you, among those born of women there has not arisen anyone greater than John the Baptist! Yet the one who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. – Matthew 11:11
But He gave him no inheritance in it, not even a foot of ground, and yet, even when he had no child, He promised that HE WOULD GIVE IT TO HIM AS A POSSESSION, AND TO HIS DESCENDANTS AFTER HIM. – Acts 7:5
6 thoughts on “The Unseen Results of Obedience”
Spiritual obedience. I just read about Judge Deborah, who led the fight against the oppressive King Jabin of Canaan, and with the help of Jael, who killed enemy commander Sisera with a tent peg, Israel felt freedom. The unseen result of spiritual obedience. Thanks for resonating a love of good.
Another example of obedience. Deborah had a word from the Lord: “Behold, the LORD, the God of Israel, has commanded, ‘Go… (Numbers 4:6),” and they went. Thanks for sharing that. Blessings.
Really, really trusting God is a hard thing; yet it’s the best thing we can ever do.
So true. It requires us to be intentional each day. Blessings.
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