Tim and Sally were your typical married couple. They met at a young age and fell in love with each other. They got married and had two kids. On the outside their life looked perfect. As life went on they got comfortable in their relationship.
Each knew what the other needed before they asked for it and even how they liked it to be done. Over time they had mastered the idea of sacrifice and obedience. Tim was willing to sacrifice time in front of the TV so he could take Sally to her bible study and he was nearly always obedient to Sally when she asked him to perform task around the house. Sally likewise was willing to sacrifice herself everyday to make sure Tim had dinner waiting for him when he got home from work, and obeyed Tim if he asked her to do him a favor. For many this sounds like the ideal marriage, but over time Sally and Tim started growing apart.
They each begin to get short with the other person and having feeling of uneasiness swell up inside of them. This led to more and more fights until after 25 years of marriage, they got a divorce. When asked why they got divorced they both said ďI started feeling like I just didnít know them anymore.Ē
This is a sad, but an all too often occurrence in this present world. Like many, Tim and Sally started out strong but ended up just going through the motion. They were willing to do the sacrifices and obedience because after a while those things become part of our live and thus easier task to perform. The problem is Tim and Sally lost their desire for relationship.
Relationship is what makes the sacrifice and obedience worth doing. Strong relationships take effort. Unlike sacrifice and obedience, relationship building is never the same. People change over life and to keep our relationships strong we must be willing to adapt. Good relationships take more than just effort, they take commitment. If you focus on building strong relationships the sacrifice and obedience will naturally follow.
Our relationship with Jesus is like a marriage:
Ephesians 5: 31-32 For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh 32 This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.
Many Christians live a life focused on sacrifice and obedience, which are good, but they never develop a relationship with him. Then they wonder why they never hear him. Jesus tells us that if we are his, we will know his voice. This speaks of an ongoing relationship.
From the very beginning God wanted relationship as proved when the Bible says that he walked with Adam during the cool of the day. This idea is continued later through Enoch when the Bible says Enoch walked with God and was not for God took Him. Finally Jesus demonstrated this when after his resurrection he met two men on a road and walked with them.
Yes, God wants sacrifice and obedience, but time after time he shows us in his word that relationship is the most important. If our relationship is truly right, then sacrifice and obedience will follow. Relationship building is never easy, but it is always necessary. How are you building your relationship with God today?
Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.
Mathew West Going Through the Motions
This might hurt
Itís not safe
But I know that Iíve gotta make a change
I donít care
If I break
At least Iíll be feeling something
ĎCause just ok
Is not enough
Help me fight through the nothingness of life
I donít wanna go through the motions
I donít wanna go one more day
Without Your all consuming passion inside of me
I donít wanna spend my whole life asking
What if I had given everything?
Instead of going through the motions
Not this time
Iím gonna let my heart defeat my mind
Let Your love
Make me whole
I think Iím finally feeling something