It was said of Christ that he was obedient to his heavenly Father, not because of fear but because of the joy that was set before him. He laid aside all weights and ran the race with patience. He endured shame and never fainted or wearied in his mind because he saw the glorious rewards of obedience.

You would think we would get so tired of our inner turmoil that we would start to hunger after the riches promised in Christ. But fear is not always the best motivator; love is! After all, divine threats were continually ignored by the children of Israel. Even God’s audible voice and his frightful thunder could not keep them from dancing around the golden calf. Only a deep, abiding love and reverence could have kept them from such disobedience.

It is the sweet surrender to the will of God which opens the heavens to us and guides us into the revelation of who he is. The scriptures say, “Whoever abides in him does not sin. Whoever sins has neither seen him nor known him” (1 John 3:6 NKJV). Could it be that by living in disobedience we become distant from God? Do we want to go our own way because we have never had a revelation of Christ, his hatred of sin and his glory and mercy? Yes! Simply put, the person who lives in disobedience has never truly seen Christ.

Jesus said, “He who has my commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him” (John 14:21).

What greater reward could we want than having Christ reveal himself to us? “Love me enough to obey me,” he beckons. “I will love you and will show you who I am!” You might read all about him — even study his nature and historical background — but you will never get to know him until you take the simple, basic step of obeying him completely in all things.

The very moment we surrender, a marvelous healing power is released in our inner man. No more dread of God or hell or retribution. No more fear of what other people can do to us. Instead, the Spirit of God begins to flood us with new hope, great joy, glorious peace and abounding faith.