By 10:00 am on Mondays the battle for obedience is lost, and I am not just talking about my kids. Getting back into the rhythm of the week and homeschooling leaves us all worn down. There is a battle over breakfast, crying over math problems, and a little one who doesn’t want to do anything but be held. Sometimes Mondays stink.
When disobedience is high, the cost is great. We get behind on school work, chores go undone, and punishments are handed out. There is constant fighting, and that is all before lunch.
The Israelites chose to disobey God, warning after warning they still sought anything but Him. They built idols that could not satisfy. They sought victories they could not win. They ignored the needy and hoarded their riches. They defied the commands of God. They rejected His laws and His prophets. They could no listen to reason or warning.
Sounds like my Mondays with three kids.
They are not the only ones in a battle for obedience, and they most certainly are not the only ones who fall short. We have built our false idols when we pick up our phones before we pick up the Word. We have disregarded the needy and weak when we reject to help the marginalized or keep our mouths shut on issues that matter. We are a greedy culture who cannot seem to get enough “stuff.” We have defied God and rejected His laws, and we live in a world that has rejected His Son.
We believe that if we go to church once a week, then we will be good enough for God. We have lulled ourselves into thinking that if we can recite John 3:16 we should be a gold star Christian. We have been lied to by the enemy when we believe if we are generally “good” then we are alright.
The Israelites learned the hard way that this wasn’t true. Their punishment came in the form of judgment. God’s chosen, faced God’s wrath. Chance after chance was given to turn from their wicked ways but every warning went ignored, every plead from God for repentance went unheard by His wayward people.
Have we heard God’s warnings? Have we listened to what His Word says about our disobedience? God’s command to us; repent. The power of the Gospel is what compels us to Christ. It draws us to repentance. It pulls us to obedience. We will not get it all right or be perfect in our pursuits, but when we are compelled by the Spirit of God, we are moved to repent when we fall short. We are challenged to listen the first time, and we are
desperate for the presence of God.
We are no better than the Israelites, each of us have disobeyed God in our own way. We have sought our own desires rather than the heart of God. We have served the world rather than the creator of it. But, there can be restoration. God promises at the end of the book of Amos that even after His judgment He will bring restoration to His people. He offers it to us to in the form of Jesus. The Gospel is our restoration.