Obedience will bring blessing

What has God put on your heart to do today? Is it something you regularly do, or is it a little ‘out-of-the-box’? This is a story about having the courage to do what God says, no matter how ‘weird’ it seems, and then witnessing how God blesses others through that obedience. I pray this simple story encourages you to follow through on promptings from the Holy Spirit, trusting that your obedience will bring blessing to yourself and others.

Walking and praying

One of my weekly activities is twice a week walking and praying around the school grounds, normally with a couple of other mothers from school. Most of the time we have no idea how God uses our prayers. We just walk and pray in faith that He is at work in the supernatural. We may never know the outcomes of those prayers, but we trust that in this season it is what God has asked us to do.

Plans change

The presence of COVID-19 put a stop to the walking around the school grounds. But it did not stop us praying together, as we like many others around the world quickly worked out how to pray together online.

No weapon that is formed against you shall prosper. Isaiah 54:17 NKJV

And, again, as I’m sure many people found during this time, the stretching and having to do things a little differently, actually became a blessing.

In our school prayer example, praying online enabled more mums to pray than could usually be present at school, which led to more conversation and deeper relationships.

It’s a bit like, the enemy had a plan, and God used it for good, sound familiar …

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28 NKJV

More changes

Now as the restrictions from COVID-19 are slowly reducing, we can walk and pray at school again, albeit in a specified area, the school oval, and with a maximum of three prayers. We are just so grateful to be allowed to pray on school grounds again.

Normally we commence our prayer walk by going around the boundary of the school. Our starting place is the oval. For the past couple of years we have done this on Friday afternoons when sport is on, so the children and teachers were used to seeing us walking and praying.

Last Friday was my first time returning to pray at school, and I was by myself. When I completed my first lap of the oval I thought, “How silly is this going to look, when I walk around the oval again?” As I couldn’t go on our normal route around the school due to the COVID-19 restrictions.

It’s not about me!

But then, with the prompting of the Holy Spirit, I remembered that it wasn’t about me! But rather it was about what God wanted to do in that moment. And I had no idea what that was, so I asked Him, “God, why is it that we are allowed only here, on the oval? I know from a COVID-19 safety perspective why we are here, but why have You got us only here? What is it that You want me to do?”

Pause for a moment and picture this – a sports oval filled 7 classes of children and their teachers, and one woman walking around the perimeter of the oval praying. What do you think God wanted me to do?

We have all been impacted by COVID-19 in different ways, especially teachers who had to completely re-think the way they deliver education very quickly, and implement new strategies effectively and efficiently.

Pray for the teachers

So God’s answer to me was simply, “Pray for the teachers on the oval.

So I started on my second prayer lap of the oval. As I walked past each teacher, God gave me a word of encouragement, very specific, which I madly scribbled on a piece of paper. As much as I wanted to, I knew it wasn’t appropriate to walk up to them in the middle of their sports activities and say, ‘Hi, I felt God wanted to say to you …. ‘

Previously I had received specific words of encouragement for teachers, normally one or two, but never seven during one prayer walk. This was a little unusual. What was God doing?

What next God?

As I drove home from school I asked God about those words of encouragement, and how specific they were, and what to with them. Do I email each teacher individually, or send a group email including everyone’s word of encouragement?

You may think, what does it matter how you deliver the words of encouragement? But more and more I am learning that God is interested in the details. It mattered to Him how they were delivered, because, as He was about to tell me, He had another message to deliver to these teachers.

God’s response to my question about the specificity was something like, “This is My body – each one with a role to play and a gift to bring.

The diversity of the body of Christ

I got it! God was wanting to not only deliver a word of encouragement to each teacher, but He wanted to send a message about the wonderful diversity of His body.

It is the same Holy Spirit who continues to distribute many different varieties of gifts.

The Lord Yahweh is one, and he is the one who apportions to believers different varieties of ministries.

The same God distributes different kinds of miracles that accomplish different results through each believer’s gift and ministry as he energises and activates them.

Each believer is given continuous revelation by the Holy Spirit to benefit not just himself but all. 1 Corinthians 12:4-7 TPT

God’s response to the ‘How’ question was ‘send as a group email‘ to illustrate the diversity of the body.

Later in the afternoon I sent that group email with the words of encouragement and supporting scriptures. The responses I received confirmed that God’s message had been delivered and understood. All glory to God, He knows what we need and when we need it.

The ‘takeaways’ from this story

So there are plenty of ‘takeaways’ from this simple story. I’ve listed them below with the supporting example.

  1. Make space in your life for God to speak to you (e.g. purposefully set aside time to pray and listen to God)
  2. Trust that God is at work in the unseen (e.g. praying for people, students and families, that we don’t know)
  3. When seemingly barriers arise, be expectant that God will use it for God (e.g. temporary move to praying online)
  4. Take your eyes off yourself and put them on Jesus (e.g. worrying about what others will think about repeatedly walking around the oval).
  5. When plans change, ask God what He wants to bring from the change (e.g. What were God’s plans for us praying only on the oval?)
  6. Be ready for God to do things differently (e.g. God’s words of encouragement for each of the seven teachers on the oval)
  7. Keep asking God for the next step (e.g. how to deliver the words of encouragement to the teachers)
  8. God has a bigger plan (e.g. this was about more than words of encouragement, it was about giving a picture of Christ’s body – unity through diversity)
  9. Obeying leads to blessing others (e.g. obeying God’s call to take time to pray lead to His word of encouragement for others).

Obedience will bring blessing

This is a very simple story of how when we obey what God asks us to do, we can be a blessing to others. Just as God wanted to encourage these teachers that they all have gifts and are part of one body, it is the same for us. We all have gifts, gifts to bless others with, however sometimes we just need a little bit of encouragement to get out there and use them!

So I pray that this story encourages you to do what God has put on your heart, and know that He has gifted you for a purpose, far greater than you could have imagined. And whatsmore, you may never know how far the blessing ripples will travel from your step of obedience.

But God has carefully designed each member and placed it in the body to function as he desires. A diversity is required, for if the body consisted of one single part, there wouldn’t be any body at all! So now we see that there are many differing parts and functions, but one body. 1 Corinthians 12:18-20 TPT

Looking for more encouragement?

Are you looking for more resources to help you draw closer to God, please check out my other blog posts and podcasts.

If you have struggling to trust God with something or someone in your life, my latest ebook may be of help to you, Choosing to trust God. It’s a short summary (only 18 pages!) of what God has been teaching me over the past 10 years about moving from a place of fear to faith. It is now available on Amazon for only $4.64.

Choosing to trust God By Wendy Robinson
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