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Right Away, All the Way, & With a Joyful Heart

I was struck by a memory this evening as I looked at all the dirty dishes in the sink, and it was my turn to do them. I thought, “I can put things in the dishwasher that fit and then do the rest tomorrow - I don’t REALLY need to do all the hand-wash dishes.” Doing the dishes are my least favorite chore, yet the sooner I get them done, the better; otherwise, who knows when they will get done - and it’s all downhill from there!


When my boys, now 20 and 16 years old, were small, I used to have this phrase to help them remember the importance of being obedient and following through. “Right away, all the way, and with a joyful heart.” It was partnered with Scripture from Proverbs that says:


“A son who obeys what he has been taught is smart (or wise)”

Proverbs 28:7

(International Children’s Bible Version)


What was, for a time, a simple help and reminder for my kids still rings true in my heart and mind today as I walk through all the daily things that might distract me from what I need to remember and then apply in my life. Even though the dishes are a small part of that, the Lord chose to use this to REMIND me of the value of simply doing what we know we need to do.

The book of Proverbs has a distinct ability to deliver what I would call “zingers.” Those thoughts and phrases that kick you in the bum and really make you think. They are also filled with good, biblical common sense that will continue to bring wisdom well beyond my years on this earth.


Every now and then, I am struck by how the concept of obedience and remembering what I have been taught is quite simple. Yet, somehow, I can make it complicated. Obedience requires a commitment to slow down, take a beat, and REMEMBER His love & grace for me - daily. Obedience in everyday life gives way to walking IN His ways. The “right away” leads to “all the way” and because of the Lord’s continuing transformation in our lives, a “joyful heart” overflows from Him.


For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments.

And his commandments are not burdensome.”

1 John 5:3 (ESV)




Erin Nonaka is a Co-Founder and the Director of Communications and Community at Humble Faith Ministries. She is an experienced worship leader, Bible teacher, and leadership trainer. Her heart yearns for women to be equipped and walk boldly for Jesus in every season of life. She currently lives in Florida with her husband and two of her three sons.

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