Obedience without love is legalism

Obedience without love is legalism! This morning as i read that statement by Henry Blackaby, i became acutely aware that in recent weeks, i somehow had settled into a walk in the dryness of spiritual discipline — “doing” all the right things, but empty of the intimacy of walking in a love relationship with my Heavenly Father. i could blame all the “stuff” that is going on in the world around us right now. i could blame those around me. But the reality is — i don’t need to look any further than myself.

What did the Master say was the first and greatest commandment — “to LOVE the LORD Your God with Your entire heart, soul and mind!”

And yet somehow i had allowed myself to skip right over “loving Him” and became content in “obeying Him” in the stuff, but not in the relationship — which isn’t really obeying Him. i got lost in the “stuff.” Not only does “the stuff” become rote and empty, but i had lost the vibrancy of an intimate walk with the One who knows me best and loves me perfectly. The joy had disappeared and i had become weary in the walk. i think that is one of the greatest ploys of the enemy — to get us so focused on the “stuff,” as well as the busyness and the doing — that we miss the abundant life — the “life to the max” that flows out of the fullness of joy of walking in an intimate relationship with the One who is love. Wow! How easily i have allowed myself to get detoured!

Blackaby went on to write, “has your worship become empty and routine? Are you experiencing spiritual lethargy? Is your prayer life reduced to a ritual?”

So, this morning the Father lovingly invited me to turn my attention back to Him — to walk with Him side-by-side, to talk with Him about those things He needed to tell me and i needed to tell Him. It’s been a delightful walk — and it doesn’t stop here. It’s not just an occasional walk. It’s not just a “first thing in the morning” walk. It’s an all-day walk — each and every day.


It’s interesting — but as i am truly walking intimately with Him — my perspective of all of the “stuff” — that which i have been doing — and that which is going on all around me — is different! Because i’m no longer focused on the “stuff” of life — but rather the Author and Giver of Life — the One who created and saved me for a love relationship with Him — so that He might be glorified in and through my life.

Please pray with me — as i no longer seek to walk simply out of obedience TO God — but rather to walk in an intimate love relationship WITH God. How about you?