I’ll admit that I go through seasons where I feel slightly rebellious. Fortunately, the urge usually lasts only a few days and is usually limited to pathetic things like rebelling against pre-rinsing dishes before putting them in the dishwasher, going to Walmart without having put deodorant on yet that day (gosh…a lot of my posts lately have been about not putting deodorant on…), and going through the doors marked “entrance” instead of the doors marked “exit” when leaving a store. Sometimes I feel compelled to eat an unhealthy amount of chips or Oreos. But for the most part, my spurts of rebellion are relatively insignificant.

But there’s something really important to know about rebellion if the rebellion you struggle with is a little more blatant and harmful. Jesus said “If you love me, obey my commandments” (John 14:15, NLT), and in Proverbs 17:11 we see that “Evil people are eager for rebellion, but they will be severely punished” (NLT).

Phew, this gives you something to think about, doesn’t it?! When you feel those rebellious urges, even if your “rebellious” actions are pretty much undetectable by anyone else, take a moment for a heart check. Are you obeying God’s commandments? Is there a root of evil growing deep in your heart that is starting to affect you?

This morning I woke up early to do some cleaning and make out my grocery list before the little people invaded my *fortress of solitude*. I whispered a prayer to God that He would speak to me about some ugliness that I’ve been dealing with in my heart for the last few weeks. I grabbed a bottle of toilet bowl cleaner and a toilet brush and turned on the video study I’ve been going through by Francis Chan on the book of James as I headed into the bathroom to clean. Up pops his uplifting, feel-good teaching on James 3:13-18 (NIV).

“Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.

But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.”

{Scoffs}

I hate it when you pray about your heart issues and then I-MME-DI-AT-ELY get confirmation from the Lord that you’re being a jerk. Conviction first thing in the morning is rough, but praise the Lord He still speaks to us today and is loving enough to correct us and re-direct us when we ask for help.

Here’s a verse we should all memorize if you haven’t already — “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind” (Luke 10:27, NLT). When we are focused on the Lord it takes our attention off our individual circumstances. And it’s really hard to be rebellious when your heart and mind are focused on the Lord. 🙂

So pre-rinse your dishes, put deodorant on, and walk through the proper doors. And put aside your selfish desires to make a rebellious statement!

New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.