Growing up this word had a very negative meaning for me. I usually only heard this word when I had done something wrong and was sheepishly listening to a reprimand. By God's grace, I want to give a different picture and feeling to my kids, as well as to my students, when they hear this word. I want the word to sound wonderful.
Here is what Calvin said,
"For until men feel that they are everything to God, that they are cherished by his parental care, and that he is the author of all their blessings, so that naught is to be looked for away from him, they will never submit to him in voluntary obedience, nay unless they place their entire happiness in him, they will never yield up their whole selves to him in truth and sincerity."
We cannot come to truly know God, or truly obey him, until we realize that we have no good in us, nothing to commend us to God and that all of our good comes directly from Him alone. Only then will whole-hearted obedience - GLAD and joyful obedience follow. God truly is "the Father of lights" whom "every good and perfect gift" come from. (James 1:17) Who would not want to follow such a God!