If we obey God, it is going to cost other people more than it costs us. We delight in obeying our Lord because we are in love with him. But this means that his plans come first in our lives, not the plans of other people. If the people around us do not love him, they may accuse us of indifference or selfishness. They may taunt us: “You call this Christianity?”

It isn’t indifference or independence that makes us act as we do. Many of us would probably prefer to be independent, to carry the burden of our obedience alone, never asking anyone for anything. We must learn that to obey is to be swept up in God’s universal purposes. His purpose for other people may be that they help us in his work, as Simon of Cyrene helped Jesus with the cross, or as Susanna offered him material support (Luke 8:2–3). To refuse help like this is to let our pride win out.

Are we going to remain loyal to God and go through the humiliation of depending on others? Or are we going to say, “I will not cause other people to suffer. I will not cost them anything”? Beware of the inclination to dictate to God what you will allow to happen if you obey him.

We can disobey God if we choose; we can prevent other people from suffering. Our disobedience will bring immediate relief. But it will hurt our Lord and, in the long run, fail to help anyone: God has already thought about the consequences of our obedience. If we obey, he—not we—will take care of everyone involved. We need only to let him.

Wisdom from Oswald

The truth is we have nothing to fear and nothing to overcome because He is all in all and we are more than conquerors through Him. The recognition of this truth is not flattering to the worker’s sense of heroics, but it is amazingly glorifying to the work of Christ. Approved Unto God, 4 R