This great, wonderful world we live in holds beauty, challenges, relationships, opportunities, and untold mysteries. And we get to enjoy them all.
Our greatest limitations are our undeveloped capabilities. Every effort we expend in growing our skills and abilities rewards us with deeper and richer experience, broader understanding, and yet more capability. We gain this knowledge, this understanding, this capacity through the use of our sensory organs. We learn to hear more discerningly, to see with greater clarity, to smell and touch and taste with discrimination. And we are rewarded for the effort.
But these sensory organs gather information only about the physical world around us.
Wouldn't it be wonderful if we had a sixth sense for gathering spiritual information; a sensory organ that could be developed to grow and enhance our capacity to know and enjoy the unlimited spiritual realities God has prepared for our pleasure?
Henry Drummond, a late 19th century Scottish writer, lecturer, and evangelist, wrote:
Obedience is the organ of spiritual knowledge.
(Henry Drummond, The Ideal Life, How to Know the Will of God (on John 7:17))
Drummond went on:
Being willing is the highest form of obedience. It is the essence and spirit of obedience.
George MacDonald, a wonderful and prolific Scottish writer of the 19th century, wrote:
Obedience is the opener of eyes.
(George MacDonald, Unspoken Sermons Series II, The Way)
Later in the same sermon, MacDonald wrote:
...if, instead of speculation, we gave ourselves to obedience, what a difference would soon be seen in the world! Oh, the multitude of so-called religious questions which the Lord would answer with, 'strive to enter in at the strait gate'! Many eat and drink and talk and teach in his presence; few do the things he says to them!
Obedience is the one key of life.
I'm not addressing here the matter of personal salvation; that's perhaps a question for another day. But I am suggesting that we can never know God as we ought or as He wants, and we can certainly never begin to experience the treasures available to us in Him unless and until we set out to obey Him. All discussion of "carnal" Christians, "losing" one's salvation, being content with the "acceptable" will of God or surrendering a future crown in exchange for a little sin in this life is patently non-Christian thinking and destroys any ability to even begin to understand the life and liberty and peace and joy available to any who desire to experience the magnificence of what God has prepared for His people.
Do you love exhilaration? Whether music or race cars, skydiving or simply the first cup of coffee in the morning, God gave us senses to enjoy His creation. But until we set out to obey Him - to please Him as a loving child seeking the smile of the proudest father - the best of our senses aren't yet functioning and we haven't begun know life as God intended it for us.
This sense is your choice. How much exhilaration can you stand?
Jesus answered him, "Those who love me will obey my teaching".
(John 14:23, Good News Bible)