“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.
“Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them.” (Colossians 3:1-7. NKJV.)
I am very stern with the children in my home when it comes to obedience. Time after time I repeat to them, “When you are disobedient toward me, who are you disobedient against?” To which they answer, “God.” I pray they will grow up to know and understand that defiance toward God is one of the worst offenses there is. I must remind myself of this as well!
My own submission to God and Christ did not come until I was 30 years old. I recall when I first began attending a church in 2006. I sat in the congregation and leafed through the bulletin. I saw they were in need of ladies to volunteer in the nursery and children’s ministry. At that time I wanted nothing to do with serving the young children. As I began studying God’s word each day I felt drawn to helping and before I knew it I found great joy in assisting with God’s precious little lambs. You see, I did not feel I needed to perform good works to earn my place in heaven but rather I felt called after dying to myself. “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16. NKJV.)
When faced with trials, my own obedience to our Heavenly Father plays a key role. Refinement (which I will address again later) is such a bittersweet process in my opinion. Though I know our sovereign God does all things for the good of those who love Him (Romans 8:28. ESV.), it is obedience to Him that must be maintained when the heat is turned up and the strain of tribulation is felt.
"The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps." (Proverbs
“Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.” (Hebrews 13:17. NKJV.)