Every parent has had that moment in which they have been talking to their children, but it is as though the children aren’t listening, and in an exasperated tone you say, “are you listening to me?” The parent isn’t questioning whether or not the child can hear. Rather, they are questioning if they are comprehending what is being said. They are questioning it, because they expected some behavioral change or some action to take place and at this point it isn’t happening. However, in a way there is a deeper question being asked, even though it is unspoken. The unspoken question is, do you love me? I hope to unpack that a little more shortly. But there is a statement at the end of every message Jesus has for each of the churches. The statement is recorded seven times in Revelation 2 and Revelation 3. Here is one of them, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the church” (Rev. 2:29).
That phrase is repeated seven times in these two chapters. It goes back to Jeremiah 5:21 in which God was looking for a righteous person and exclaimed that “having eyes they do not see, and having ears they do not hear.” God’s point to the nation of Israel and Jesus’ message to the church in Revelation is the same, proof that you understand what I am saying will be seen in what you do. How do we know that our children have heard what we are saying to them? They obey our words. Their obedience is at least in part an indication of their love for us. If we ask our children to do something, and they don’t do it, we are going to feel as though we have been rejected or that we simply don’t matter to our children. This translates to our relationship with God as well, because Jesus said in John 14:15, “If you love Me, keep my commandments.” In other words, proof of your love for Me is seen by you obeying Me. When we know what to do, but we don’t do it, it is a rejection of Jesus and it is showing a lack of love for Him. We can say all day long how much we love Jesus, just like our children tell us as their parents that they love us. However, when we don’t obey Jesus or our children don’t obey us, they are saying the exact opposite of love. A lot of people think that the opposite of love is hate. In reality, the opposite of love is apathy or indifference, just not caring.
Therefore, as we begin our final week in this series, I think we need to ask ourselves an important question, do my actions match the words I say about my feelings towards God? If I say that I love Him, is it evident by my obedience to Him? If not, take time to confess it, repent of it, and ask for God’s help. You will not be able to obey Jesus on your own. It takes the work of the Holy Spirit in you and working through you. The good news is if you have been saved, you already have the Holy Spirit, He is more than willing to do the work in you, but you have to surrender yourself to God every single day. Maybe 2020 hasn’t gone the way you wanted it to or thought it would. Nothing says you can’t end 2020 well. After all, it’s not how you start that matters, it’s how you finish. Therefore, let’s all strive to hear Jesus’ voice, and obey Him with our life from this day forward.
By His grace and for His glory,