For the past couple of days I have been studying the topic of Stubbornness. Dictionary.com defined Stubbornness as - "fixed or set in purpose or opinion." I have been using my life application Bible to look up scriptures pertaining to situations in the Bible surrounding stubbornness and stubborn people.
I noticed that my life application Bible had quite a few scriptures about stubbornness so decided that I was going to break up my study of stubbornness into two days. One day I would study this group of scriptures and the next day I would study the other group of scriptures. That was the plan.
The first day went great. Then day two came. I went to turn to the back of my Bible to find the remaining scriptures I needed to study and then I was being led to study 1 John ch. 4. When the thought popped into my mind I was like 1 John ch. 4? nuhh uhhh I'm studying the rest of these scriptures about stubbornness.
Then the Lord was oh so you're being stubborn and don't want to read what I am leading you to read. Then I was like oh snap okay God I'll study 1 John ch. 4.
I've read the book of 1 John a few times. It's actually one of my favorites. It's super convicting to me. It's all about loving God and His people. I struggle more with the latter.
So anyways as I was reading I realized why God wanted me to read 1 John ch. 4. He was trying to show me that stubbornness and love does not work together.
In stubbornness you want to do what you don't to do and when you want to do it. If there is a change or alteration of any sort presented it is not well received.
I said this because let the truth be told - I'm stubborn. I don't really like change and I do not like to deviate from the original plan. However, here's what I learned....
- When you get married you have to submit to your husband. You have to be willing to go where he leads as he is being led by God. BUT if you are stubborn and don't want to follow his leading because it wasn't in the original plan then how do you expect your marriage to work? Or if you are single[like myself], how are you ready for marriage? - You aren't!
- When you are stubborn it does not only affect your relationship with people but also your relationship with God. This can be seen in the example I shared above. I didn't want to read 1 John 4 I wanted to read the rest of my scriptures about stubbornness! However, God is not following your plan He is following His plan. Therefore, if you want to be used by God and walking in His will for your life you have to be ready to go where the Holy Spirit leads you. You have to be willing to do what the Holy Spirit asks you to do. How can you do this if you are stubborn? - You can't!
- Sometimes stubbornness is a result of fear or lack of trust. A lot of the time you know your way will work out fine but when presented with a new way of doing things you are not quite sure if it is going to work out. As a result, you are hesitant to try the other alternatives. So sometimes fear and lack of trust manifest themselves in the form of stubbornness. But as 1 John 4: 8 says, "There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love."
- Stubbornness is not always bad. When it comes to being a Christian and standing firm on your faith I believe we should be stubborn. 1 Corinthians 1:13 says, "Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong." But we also need to find a balance in still keeping our heart sensitive to those who aren't believers while not wavering in our beliefs. We need to make sure we are being good listeners so that we can properly minister to them when led by God to do so.
Love and stubbornness cannot coincide. Something has to be let go. Love triumphs fear. Love triumphs lack of trust. Love triumphs stubbornness. So choose love it may not be easy but it is sure worth it. If this is a struggle for you pray to God to help you. He will.
Question for the comments: In what ways have you been stubborn? Has it interfered with your relationship with God?
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