This is post 2 of 4 reviewing the Sermon on the Mount material covered at White Station Junior High Camp.
When we hear the word "Obedience" we often think of following the rules and blinding doing what some authority figure tells us is the right thing to do. With no room to move around or swim in the ocean of God's grace, it's like we are trapped in the kiddie pool when it comes to obeying God. Then Jesus begins to say things like, "You have heard it taught in this way... but I want you to know what that law really means." Immediately the pool grows deeper and wider and we are understanding and experiencing how God's blessing of grace is to be lived out in obedience, connecting us to God's heart and character, which are displayed within His law.
There are two types of obedience. The first type is what we might call a shallow obedience because it is based upon a set of rule and regulations. The aim of this obedience is to simply let people see that I know how to follow the rules and perform well enough to get by with the minimum requirements. The second type is what we might call a deep obedience because it comes from our hearts and connects us with the reasons behind the rules and regulations. Obedience can be shallow or deep, but Jesus claims that God deserves our deep obedience to him.
Teaching: Read Matthew 5:17-48
We discussed the passages in small groups and then shared our findings with each other, but I made sure to hit on the following points from the texts:
Practice deep obedience. When you are asked to do something, try to figure out how you can go beyond what the person wants done to show that you understand the deeper meaning of the request or rule. Develop a heart of service that moves beyond what’s required, and that development starts by taking the initiative right now.
Invent ways this week to go beyond what you are asked to do, or even what you feel you need to do to “make the asker happy” and look for a deeper way to obey, serve, and love other. AND then...take this attitude home with you, to school with you, and to work with you.
I want to share thoughts, insights, and scriptures that lead us in the direction of Christ.