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There are many temptations in the world today that stop us from reaching this. Satan is working harder than ever to stop us from obeying all of the Commandments, but the Fourth Commandment always seemed to hit hard for me:

“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it” (Exodus 20:8-11 Exodus 20:8-11 [8] Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. [9] Six days shall you labor, and do all your work: [10] But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD your God: in it you shall not do any work, you, nor your son, nor your daughter, your manservant, nor your maidservant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger that is within your gates: [11] For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: why the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.
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).

When I was younger I had a love for soccer (and still do), but every game was on a Saturday. I had to choose. Not everyone in my family attended church, which sometimes made it feel like I could do whatever I wanted. I did not always choose the right way, God’s way. I was selfish, and gave in to my human nature, as we all do sometimes. In Romans 3:10 Romans 3:10As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:
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it says, “As it is written: there is no one righteous, not even one.”

As I grew older I decided I would not go to Saturday games anymore, which meant quitting soccer. This decision changed my life. Now, it is not even a question whether I should do or not do things that are just for my own pleasure on the Sabbath (Isaiah 58:13 Isaiah 58:13If you turn away your foot from the sabbath, from doing your pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honorable; and shall honor him, not doing your own ways, nor finding your own pleasure, nor speaking your own words:
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).

That doesn’t mean it was easy. Jesus said to everyone, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me” (Luke 9:23 Luke 9:23And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.
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). We must be willing to give up everything if we wish to be a part of God’s family. My choice meant no more sports on the Sabbath, no being in my high school musical, no dances on Friday night, and the most recent challenge, getting cut from the basketball team after talking to the coach about the time I would miss.

My relationship with God is so special and worth more than any Friday night football game or school dance.

Sometimes saying no is not the only difficult part to keeping this Commandment. It might come after you stand up for God. You may feel self-conscious about what people think about you. Every once in a while I feel unaccepted watching the other girls go to practice. But I’ve realized I do not need to prove I am good enough to them. We only need to be accepted by God. We have to remember that when we give up something for God, we have a stronger connection with Him. “‘Has not my hand made all these things, and so they came into being?’ declares the Lord. ‘These are the ones I look on with favor: those who are humble and contrite in spirit, and who tremble at my word’” (Isaiah 66:2 Isaiah 66:2For all those things has my hand made, and all those things have been, said the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembles at my word.
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, New International Version).

This relationship with God is so special and worth more than any Friday night football game or school dance. Satan wants us to hate God, to destroy our relationship with Him. Because of my choice, there were many difficult consequences, but I am still glad I did it.

And even though there are things I’ve had to give up, I am appreciative of the continuous gifts God showers upon me. I am so blessed with my health, a roof over my head, a wonderful family that loves me and hope for an even bigger family yet to come.

It is difficult to fit in because we are meant to stand out and be a light. Matthew 5:16 Matthew 5:16Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
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says, “Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.”

We never know what God has in store for us. “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future’” (Jeremiah 29:11 Jeremiah 29:11For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, said the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.
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, NIV). He has a plan for all of us. These little things in life that seem so important are small compared to the glory God has prepared for us.

By Althea Callea