What exactly does it mean to heed the voice of the Lord? I love the book of Deuteronomy because of the vast and many life points that still apply to us (me) today. The Israelites wandered and wandered in the desert with a mighty God leading them. Yet they still grumbled, doubted, and made mistakes…but God continuously used those mistakes to make known to them that HE was there with them…loving them. Cherishing them (sometimes through discipline). My children have a little children’s bible called, The Jesus Storybook Bible. It is simple and playful and portrays their first view of God as a King so enamored with His kingdom that He will do everything He can to rescue those He loves and that love Him. In one of the first introductory stories the author explains what exactly the Bible is. Here’s a little excerpt that I love, if you read this to your children then you may be familiar with it on page 14.
“Now, some people think the Bible is a book of rules, telling you what you should and shouldn’t do. The Bible certainly does have some rules in it. They show you how life works best. But the Bible isn’t mainly about you and what you should (my emphasis added) be doing. It’s about God and what He has done. No, the Bible isn’t a book of rules, or a book of heroes. The Bible is most of all a Story. It’s an adventure story about a young Hero who comes from a far country to win back His lost treasure.” (The Jesus Storybook Bible, 17).
Do you view yourself as a treasure? Do you view yourself as something innately precious that is jealously sought after? So again, what does it mean to heed the voice of the Lord? What if, no matter how hard we try, we can’t possibly keep all His commandments? Such simple guidelines to show us how life works best? Isn’t it interesting that even though God laid out those guidelines….we still can’t help ourselves and we find ways to mess things up or venture away from Him. Yet He is jealously seeking after you!
“And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake (my emphasis added) you if you heed the voice of the Lord your God.” Deut. 28.2. What if, instead of doing things our way we faithfully prayed our way through our circumstances understanding though we may not make the right decisions we are putting one foot in front of the other in blind faith trusting God to lead us? What if we applied this concept to every aspect of our lives? Child rearing? Serving our spouses? Loving one another without putting our own agendas first? How and what we say to complete strangers who may think differently than we do? What would happen?
What if we were to wholeheartedly seek and keep His commandments? What would the world see? Would they see legalists keeping strict rules? Surely we are all human. We do and will make mistakes. But remember…you are a treasure. If we seek after Him, He will do the rest for us…and we will experience that “overtaking” power that God is for us. What would the world see then? People that love a God who desires us to follow Him and despite their many flaws, loves them anyways. People that witness with their life actions to a hungry world seeking after treasure themselves instead of realizing that they are the treasure. People that live their lives as mirrors reflecting God’s mercy, His glory, His love, His word. People whose mistakes are carefully watched but shown to be made new and whole despite their mistakes.
So, if I will listen diligently to the voice of the Lord my God, being watchful to do all His commandments (which I can’t possibly keep)…who am I really watching? Jesus. He did it all. He came and lived that perfect life I never can or will. He was watchful to keep ALL the commandments. He was put to death because that was my punishment. He loved me enough to step down in to my shoes…to say..I will do it. I will take the responsibility. Because of this vast and deep love for a buried treasure. I have been overtaken because I have heeded His voice…I look to HIs son and say “I can’t do it all…but you can.” All other religions mainly tell you what you should be doing to get to Heaven. God says….look what I have done. Done. Finished!
And this is what I want to show my children. Mommy makes mistakes. Sometimes mommy is grumpy. Sometimes mommy fails you. Mommy can’t keep it altogether….but she looks to Jesus. The One who kept all the commandments and has given His claimed blessings to me. His treasure.
Do you see yourself as a treasure?
You are a treasure.
Let yourself be overtaken.
Mommy is overtaken.