I have often told my children how they teach me to be a more authentic believer of Christ. The suffering that I as an adoptive mother experience, creates an opportunity for God to refine much needed character qualities in me. These traits more accurately reflect Him and reveal what Christ had to learn and apply for me. One of those traits is obedience.
Jesus as the son had to learn obedience and perfect it.
“Although He was the son, He learned obedience through what He suffered.” Hebrews 5:8
This does not imply that He was getting rid of defects through the act of obedience, but instead He gradually fulfilled the perfect righteousness that He had to have in order to save us.
“For it was fitting that he, from whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering.” Hebrews 2:10
Christ learned obedience through his suffering and so do I.
As the truth wrapped in scripture is pressed into me through the pressure of my trial, it forces me to make a conscious decision to obey.
I don’t imagine it was easy for Christ to let go of his rights and allow himself to be brutally beaten and hammered to a cross. I don’t think it came naturally to love those who despitefully used him, but that he obediently did. As they mocked and ridiculed his identity, he uttered the words, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do”, with absolute resolve to do the Father’s will above his own.
I see what Jesus did for me. I can relate to him letting go of his rights, his agenda, his plan in order for the Father’s purposes to prevail. This isn’t an easy choice, but one that seems to bring spiritual freedom as I make it. As an adoptive mother, there are often times when I might feel justified by my feelings toward them and their behaviors. Sometimes merely offering grace when they have wronged me is an act of submission. I don’t know if I could allow myself to be pinned to a cross just yet, but I am learning through my suffering to be an instrument for God’s use in the lives of my children. I decide daily, to pick up my cross, deny myself and follow Him and His commands.
Jesus was perfectly in love with God and acted consistently with that love. I must choose to clothe myself with that same kind of garment. He was so committed to obedience, that nothing or no one derailed him.
As a mother I cannot base my reactions off their behaviors. I must choose instead to obediently act as Christ would have me to. Love. Forgive. Pray. Show compassion. With each new trial and hardship we face, we learn through our pain to practice what it means to obey. Christ willingly did. This gives me a deeper respect for who He is as a man and as the Son of God. Because like us, he experienced temptation, suffering and pain in order to test his righteousness and his devotion to the Father. This makes him a more suitable savior for a fallen people. This allows adversity to teach us to be better mothers, better fathers and better followers… ones who are more like Christ. Who with devotion and commitment actively pursue obedience at any cost.