Tag Archives: obedience

Free to Obey

Free to Obey
by Danny Tariman

“Our old self was crucified with him, so that… we might no longer be in slavery to sin.” – Romans 6:6

Grumbler. Disobedient. Proud. These were my workplace traits.

As a young professional striving to move up, I would almost always find a way to complain about what my boss would tell me. I’d question his wisdom, thinking, “I know about computers more than him. I know what I am doing!”

Consequently, running into trouble at work was a normal happening. I didn’t know that when I disobeyed my boss, I was disobeying the Lord.

As I got renewed in the Spirit, I came across the Word in Romans 13:1-2 which says, “Let every person be subordinated to the higher authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been established by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed.”

I repented.

As I strive to obey the Word now, I am blessed. The Lord is prospering my work and blessing all my undertakings (Deuteronomy 28:12).

I am now free to obey my boss!

Reflection
“Don’t just do what you have to do to get by, but work heartily, as Christ’s servants doing what God wants you to do. And work with a smile on your face, always keeping in mind that no matter who happens to be giving the orders, you’re really serving God.” (Ephesians 6:6-7, The Message)

Prayer:
Grant me, Lord, the grace to obey the authorities You’ve set above me.

[This reflection was originally published in Didache, April 3 2010]
[Photo credit: Nieva Adique]

Obedience: A Key to Blessings

Obedience: A Key to Blessings
by Danny Tariman

“All these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, if you obey the voice of the LORD your God” (Deut 28:2)

The word “all” in the verse above explodes like a mega-atomic bomb to me!

It appears to me that this is deluge of blessings! It is flood of blessings! Overwhelming!

The verse further says that these blessings “overtake you”. I looked in the dictionary and it also means “overpower”.

It is all in superlatives – the blessings galore!

But there is one condition: obedience to the LORD.

This is where most of us find ourselves struggling.

In workplace, in ministry, in organizations or even in informal groupings, there is always an appointed or selected leader. I had noticed many times, a lot of people stumble in the area of obeying their leaders.

“Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed” (Rom 13:1-2)

Do you realize that when you disobey your leader, you are disobeying God?

Another area that I had noted many people falter is giving our best in our work – be it in the office, in church, or in organizations. We tend to give a mediocre work. We do our jobs with a “just passing” mark instead of a “well done” job.

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men (Col 3:23)

We are commanded in the Word that we have to give our all – heartily – that is, working with all our heart.

At times, we tend to be short-sighted. We do our work for our earthly boss, when we should set our eyes to our Heavenly Boss. The verse (Col 3:23) is clear about it: we work as for the Lord.

There are many areas in our lives that we need to obey the Lord’s commands. I cannot put them all in this short blog. I hope you can regularly read the Bible – because it is here that His Words are written – so that you will know how to live a life that is pleasing to God.

And as you please the LORD in all areas of your life, obeying His voice, I pray you will experience God’s bountiful blessings pouring into your life.

Teaching Our Children

Teaching Our Children
by Danny Tariman

“Let these words that I’m commanding you today be always on your heart. Teach them repeatedly to your children. Talk about them while sitting in your house or walking on the road, and as you lie down or get up.” (Deutoronomy 6:6-7)

“My dear, just speak to our children. Remind them again…” my wife will plead with me lovingly each time any of my kids would violate a house rule or break family value.

I realized now with the Biblical principle outlined in the verse above, that I have to remind the children repeatedly, or as often as necessary.

But this is not merely for a house rule that had been violated, nor for a family value that was breached, nor for a plain disobedience.

As parents, it is our highest responsibility to teach our children the way of the Lord, to teach them about Christianity in every area of our lives. We need to teach them repeatedly, as the Bible says “teach them repeatedly to your children.” Talk about them whether at rest or in an activity.

Most of the problems in our society today can be traced back to the lack of Biblical teaching or the need for basic Christian living principles being drilled down to children.

For example: the respect for authorities.

“Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.” (Romans 13:1)

Many of our people today do not respect government officers, church leaders, school teachers, and other persons of authorities. While still young, we need to repeatedly teach our children about respect.

Another simple yet often violated rule: the pedestrian crossing. The Bible is very clear about disobeying even “small” rules

“Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commands and teaches others to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven…” (Matthew 5:19)

I tried standing for 5 minutes at a road intersection with a traffic light. I observed how people will obey the traffic lights. I tell you, not a few – but many, more than the fingers of my two hands – I had noticed, disregard the “red signal” light.

At work, do we give our best even when the supervisor is not around?

“Obey your earthly masters with fear, trembling, and sincerity, as for the Lord. Do not do this only while you’re being watched in order to please them” (Eph 6:5-6)

Have you heard the saying “the mouse is active when the cat is away”? The verse above says that we have to work diligently even while we are not being watched.

There are a lot of Christian principles that we need to understand and drill down to our children. But this short reflection cannot handle all these. I hope you can start today studying the Word of God and drill them down to your children and to your children’s children.

My dear parents, there is an urgent need for us to teach our children. Repeatedly. Until they are able to absorb them in their heart.

One final reminder: do not be afraid to discipline your children. The Bible is very clear about this:

“Now all discipline seems painful at the time, not joyful. But later it produces the fruit of peace and righteousness for those trained by it.” (Hebrew 12:11)

May God bless us in our parenting task!

“Boss-Friend”

“Boss-Friend”
by Danny Tariman

“You are my friends if you do what I command you.” (John 15:14)

Jesus is my Master, my Lord, my King.

I want to be His friend.

The Bible in John 15:14 is clear about it: we can be friends with Him if we obey His command.

The key to our friendship with Him is our obedience to Him.

This is the same in our offices, in ministries, and in everything where we work with leaders.

It feels light and easy if we are friends with our superiors, right?

The same Biblical principle applies to our relationship or friendship with our earthly masters: we have to obey them.

In fact in the Book of Romans, it is emphasized:

“Every person must be subject to the governing authorities, for no authority exists except by God’s permission. The existing authorities have been established by God, so that whoever resists the authorities opposes what God has established” (Romans 13:1-2)

As a manager in an office, I tend to be easy on my staff who follow my directions. In fact, because of the trust they have earned from me, I would give the more critical tasks to these people. And they are just happy to do it for me. After office work, we are friends.

But this is not the kind of relationship I have with people who does not follow my instructions. I tend to be firm and strict with them. And yes, they consider me as a ‘boss’ and not as a ‘friend’.

As a leader in church volunteer groups, I have the same feeling: those who follow what I tell them to do are friends with me.

It is quite hard for a leader to be friends with people who does not obey what you tell them to do. Let us lighten their task.

Let’s be friends with our leaders, with our earthly masters, just as we wanted to be friends with Jesus.

Let us obey them. Because as we obey them, we also obey the Lord (Romans 13:1-2).

May the Lord empower you to obey your leaders, and prosper you in return!

Small Rules

Small Rules
by Danny Tariman

“Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commands and teaches others to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven…” (Matthew 5:19)

There are blessings, I mean a LOT of blessings, for obedience. The Word of God is very clear about following His Word.

“If you faithfully obey the voice of the LORD your God, being careful to do all his commandments that I command you today… all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you” (Deut 28:1-2)

I couldn’t fathom the blessings that are to “come and overtake” us when we obey the LORD.

But this is not just obeying the big commands. He says “being careful to DO ALL” – meaning “big” and “small” and everything!

I have noticed however, that there are many of us who disregard the “small rules”.

For example, crossing the pedestrian when the signal light is red, or even crossing the street outside of the pedestrian lane.

I remember my then little girl, many years ago. We were about to cross diagonally to cut short our steps, such that we will be walking outside of the lane. She reminded me “Papa, there is the pedestrian lane”, pointing her finger to the lane.. It is so embarrassing that a little girl would remind his father.

But this happens not just in our ordinary lives.

This happens too in church affairs.

One time, our pastor asked us, the church servants, to arrive at the church, 30 minutes before the Mass.

However, one of the servants, who maybe has difficulty arriving early, told the group “Maybe we can still serve if we arrive at least before the First Reading.” To which almost everyone agreed.

Deep in my heart, I was struggling. I remember the Bible verse that says “whoever relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven” (Mt 5:19 ESV)

It is not just our pastor that we – as a group – were disobeying, it is the LORD because the Word came from Him.

I prayed for grace, that despite our group “relaxing” of the rule, I will be able to come at the designated time of 30 minutes before the church service.

Let us strive to obey the LORD in all areas of our lives.

May you experience God’s bountiful blessings as you obey His Word!