How Obedience Really Works


Grandson, come over here and sit on my knee and let me tell you a story.

The young boy came over and with some assistance jumped on the lap of faded overalls of his grandfather.  The old man began;

Back a long time ago, there was this old man. He had been successful in ever part of his life, his family, his money, and his relationship with God.  One day it was time for his son to receive his inheritance. He told his son he would give him three large fields but on one condition. The son must plant exactly what he told him in each field.

He walked his son over to the first field and said I want you to plant corn in this field. They journeyed over to the second and said this field should be seeded with wheat. They continued to the finally field and instructed him to plant barley.

“I’m going away for a bit and will return at harvest time. You do exactly like I’ve instructed and the three fields are yours as an inheritance. Good luck and may it be a joyful harvest to come,” the old man told his son.

The grandson listened intently from the knee of grandfather as he told the story.

The young man really wanted to prove himself. So he put his new education to use by testing the soil. He started with the first field. He took a soil sample and confirmed that the field was perfect levels for growing corn.

He went to the next field and did the same soil test. His father was right again. The soil was perfect conditions for growing wheat.

However the test on the third field came back negative. The soil was not conducive for growing barley. His father had made a mistake. The soil was much too hard and rocky. However the chemical makeup made the field perfect for peanuts. Not wanting to disappoint his father with a bad harvest (he reasoned) he would plant the peanuts.

At harvest time the father visited the fields with the son. The first field was full of tall dark green flowing corn. They visited the second field and it too was full of tall rows of wheat. As they arrived at the last field, instead of seeing a field full of barley they looked at peanuts.

He said “Son, I told you to plant barley here.”

“I know dad but I tested the fields’ soil and on the first two fields you were correct in what to plant, but this one you made a mistake. It couldn’t produce a plentiful harvest of barley but the conditions were perfect for peanuts,” pleaded the son.

“How foolish you are! I gave you one simple task. You were not obedient. I sadly say you will not receive your inheritance.”

The small boy asked,

Pawpaw, why did he not get his inheritance? He did good with the third field didn’t he? Sounds like he was just being a jerk cause he didn’t like to be proved wrong.

The old man was waiting on this question.

You see, the son was obedient on the first and second field when he agreed with his father on what to plant but he was disobedient when he didn’t agree. You see, not only was the father testing his son, he also had plans for the field of barley that he cannot reveal to his son now. The father had a bigger picture in mind, far beyond what the young man could see. So grandson, will you be obedient when you get instructions from your parents? From your boss? From God? Even when you don’t agree?




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6 thoughts on “How Obedience Really Works

  1. …your Paw Paw stories just make my heart smile! God bless you Cranston and your family in the New Year! ~Zoey

  2. alackof says:

    How can this man be so successful that it leads to the insecurity of “testing” his son? What was the “bigger picture” that was so important? If it can’t be shared now it seems like a convenient excuse for withholding knowledge and power from others.
    This sounds like the mushroom approach the leadership. Keep others in the dark and keep piling manure on them 😉

  3. There is something to be said for blind faith. It’s not easy!

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