The other day Cole and I were sitting around hanging out together. Out of the blue, he looked at me and said, “I want to be an adult.”
I smiled. Already, he was in a hurry to grow up.
I remembered from my own childhood when I had grand plans for when I became an adult. I wanted to hear what his were.
“Why do you want to be an adult?”
Without missing a beat he innocently said, “So I can tell my kids what to do.”
“Like Mommy and I do?”
Again, an answer of total, childlike honesty: “Yes.”
“While it’s true Mommy and I tell you and Chloe what to do, y’all don’t always listen to us,” I said. “You don’t clean your room. You fight with your sister. You forget your manners. Why would you want to be an adult and have children who don’t do what you tell them?”
Cole shrugged his shoulders. “I don’t know.”
“Would you want your children to listen to you and do what they’re told?”
So would I.
So would God.
Throughout scripture, God’s people have had a nasty habit of not doing what they’re told. We call this type of action sin. Sometimes God’s people sinned because of outright rebellion (Numbers 14). Sometimes they sinned by turning to and worshipping false gods (Numbers 25).
In these instances and many more, the Israelites didn’t do the things God clearly told them to do. At other times, the Israelites did things God clearly had told them not to do.
But that was the Israelites. It’s not like that sort of thing happens today, right?
You’d be surprised how many of God’s people don’t listen to him and do as they’re told, even today. Even with all the lessons to be learned from the Israelites’ missteps, God’s people today still sin, do not listen and make some of the very same mistakes the Israelites made.
It makes me wonder: Do I listen to God like I should? Am I one of those people who turns a deaf ear when God’s mandates don’t line up with what I want to do? Does God get as frustrated with me when I don’t do what he tells me as I get with Chloe and Cole when they don’t do what I tell them?
How about you?
As God’s children, we must not just say we’re willing to listen to God, we must actually listen to him and do what he tells us.
The Rev. Parrish Myers is a local minister living in Braselton. His column appears biweekly in Sunday Life and on gainesvilletimes.com/life.