My three-year-old has become something of an expert in the art of ‘selective doing’—a term we created to describe her fluctuating willingness to follow our instructions. If she approves of the outcome she will most likely obey without any fuss, but if she doesn’t—well let’s just say it can be quite a process getting her to follow through!
If you’re a parent I’m quite sure you can relate to this on some level! Yet, isn’t it true that even as adults many of us have perfected this art of ‘selective doing’ when it comes to obeying the will of God in our lives?
”I don’t like the sound of that—I think I’ll pass.”
“I can’t take that risk.”
“I’m not equipped.”
Like a child who doesn’t like the sound of what she hears, we simply don’t want to follow through—and so we don’t.
As I’ve been going through my daily reading plan I’ve been challenged by men and women of God who respond to His instructions very differently, countering this ‘selective doing’ phenomenon with radical obedience. They listen and obey—immediately and without hesitation. No matter the command. No matter the cost.
“and Noah did everything just as God commanded him” (Genesis 6:22, NIV).
“When Joseph woke up he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him” (Matthew 1:24, NIV).
“And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word” (Luke 1:38, ESV).
These were no insignificant instructions. Following them took courage and faith. They trusted that these very commands were the result of God’s providential plan, not just for their lives, but for the whole of humanity.
What might this coming year look like if we displayed this kind of radical obedience? Listening and obeying without hesitation or fear—becoming unquestionable doers of God’s word and trusting fully in the One who knows what we need and what must come to pass to fulfill His glorious plan.
I hope this will be the year we all find out.