thankfulness & gratitude
“Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And so it was that as they went, they were cleansed.”
The Lord gave an instruction to the ten lepers. “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” The Lord did not pronounce healing on them. He did not pray over them. He gave them instruction for them to obey. They obeyed and they were cleansed.
Obedience is a demonstration of our faith in Him and without faith, we cannot please Him. –Heb 11:6. Many of us talk of our faith in God and we also witness of God’s interventions in our lives but yet we are not enjoying the fullness of God, for we are not willing to obey Him.
We see Naaman the leper was struggling to obey. –2 Kings 5:10. And Elisha sent a messenger to him, saying, “Go and wash in the Jordan seven times, and your flesh shall be restored to you, and you shall be clean.” This must have been quite humiliating for Naaman for he had come all the way from Aram, along with his entourage, expecting some sort of theatrical healing to take place. Nothing of that sort happened. Elisha the prophet never even came out to meet him.
Naaman was furious. –2 Kings 5:11. But Naaman became furious, and went away and said, “Indeed, I said to myself, ‘He will surely come out to me, and stand and call on the name of the LORD his God, and wave his hand over the place, and heal the leprosy.’
Naaman was intending to go back to Aram and not obey what the prophet had asked him to do. Naaman’s servants pleaded and convinced him otherwise. Naaman obeyed. –2 Kings 5:14. So he went down and dipped seven times in the Jordan, according to the saying of the man of God; and his flesh was restored like the flesh of a little child, and he was clean.
Naaman was healed of his leprosy but Naaman was healed as a person on the inside and he experienced the fullness of life in God.
We are familiar with the first miracle that Jesus did of changing the water into wine. How did this miracle take place?–John 2:5. His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.” The servants were the closest to the crisis. They could have questioned as to why they should fill all those tall jars with water. It would have made no sense to them but they obeyed. It was the servants, whom the Lord was reaching through the miracle.
The Lord desires that we be close to Him and have life in all its abundance but the pre-requisite is our obedience to Him. Obedience to the Lord precedes all else in life. Ours is to obey Him.
King Saul wavered in his obedience. I Samuel 15:20-23. And Saul said to Samuel, “But I have obeyed the voice of the LORD, and gone on the mission on which the LORD sent me, and brought back Agag king of Amalek; I have utterly destroyed the Amalekites. (21) But the people took of the plunder, sheep and oxen, the best of the things which should have been utterly destroyed, to sacrifice to the LORD your God in Gilgal.”
Saul knew that the instruction was that all should be destroyed but he allowed the best things, which should have been destroyed, to offer sacrifices to the Lord.
So Samuel said: “Has the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, As in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams.”
What is important to God? Is it obedience to Him or is it our offering and sacrifices that we offer to Him? We will all say, “Obedience to God is what is important to Him” but in practice, we are like King Saul. We think that our spiritual disciplines and our spiritual activities will compensate for our obedience.
Are there specific areas in your life, where you know that the Lord has been repeatedly impressing upon you to obey Him and you have not? Will you lay that matter at the feet of the Lord, this very moment?
When we do not obey the Lord, what does it mean? (23) For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the LORD, He also has rejected you from being king.” Disobedience is rebellion and rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft and idolatry. Let us not take our disobedience to God, casually.
The ten lepers obeyed and they went. As they went, they were cleansed. They were healed not only of their leprosy but they were now surrendered to God. They had healing both within and without.