Notes from the church lady: Blessings come from listening to God

Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Psalm 51:10

Mark and I are blessed to have a very sweet little dog with a great disposition. Usually she is a very obedient little dog that listens to commands especially to come, that is until she gets around the cats. After chasing the cats she has to sniff everywhere they were in case she missed something. I know she hears me calling but she is deliberately rebellious and defiant until she is ready to come to me. Dogs aren't the only creatures who can become openly rebellious and defiant as I was reminded a week ago.

I am in a Bible study group who is studying "One in a Million" by Priscilla Shirer. It is a study of the Israelites journey from Egypt to the Promised Land. Every week we have five days of homework to do which involves reading, looking up Bible verses, and answering questions. On Sunday we get together at Sunday School and discuss what we learned during the week. The very first week our teacher asked how we liked it. I am afraid I growled at her because it was a hard week of study with questions that didn't just step on your toes, but pummeled you into the ground.

The study was not only easier, but more enjoyable the second and third weeks and then came the fourth. I will never be sure what happened but I decided I didn't want to work on the study because I had better things to do with my time. This open rebellion continued on until Friday evening when I finally decided I had made a commitment to this study and it was time to get busy. I got all of my homework done but I didn't receive the blessings if I had worked on it all week long.

In Sunday School that week I confessed to the class I was a rebellious sinner. At first they were surprised at my open declaration but listened as I shared how I let everything got in the way instead of studying. I knew right then and there that things had to change and I had to make my Bible study a priority. I asked God for forgiveness and made a promise to get back on track.

The next week of study I started each day in God's Word and was blessed as God taught me about the Israelites and how their situation applied to me. The lesson still hit hard, but I knew it was for my own good. I read how the Israelites were getting closer and closer to Canaan and how God allowed Moses to see into the land but not cross over into it. His rebellion and disobedience cost him dearly and it was to my benefit to learn from it.

Like our little dog, I too have selective hearing and sometimes desire to do things my way instead of the right way. I need to realize God's plan for my life is in my best interest and when I listen to Him I receive countless blessings. Hmmm, I wonder what God has in store for me next week and in the Bible studies yet to come.

Debra Whittington is a longtime resident of Tucumcari. Contact her at:

dawhittington@msn.com

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