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Sacrifices

19 Jan

“I will not give God that which costs me nothing.” So said King David when offered the ground for the temple and the bulls etc for sacrifice, for free. I’ve been pondering on that verse since I read an article that my husband had linked to on Facebook. http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2012/januaryweb-only/clothingmatters.html

Then this morning, in doing a word study on “thanksgiving” in my concordance, I see verse after verse on the “Sacrifice of thanksgiving”. God commanded the Israelites to give thanksgiving offerings, and in Leviticus 22, he said to do it in such a way that they would be accepted, stating over and over that he is holy and “I am the Lord”. What would a thanksgiving offering look like today? Psalms says we bring a sacrifice of praise into the house of the Lord. What does a sacrifice of praise look like? In Malachi God is displeased with the people for bringing blind or sick animals to sacrifice. He called them cheats and robbers.

I’m still thinking this concept over, but do we “rob God” of a sacrifice of praise when we come to Sunday worship looking like we just rolled out of bed, or worse don’t come at all because we stayed up too late watching movies or football on Saturday night? Or when we sit in the pew critiquing the music rather than entering in to worship? After all we are free under grace, not the law. Seeing the article give the example of a wedding, wouldn’t we be scandalized to see someone show up in holey jeans and flip flops to that special event. How disrespectful, how thoughtless. Should we take any less care when we worship the Holy God of the universe? I’m not saying you can’t worship in your overalls standing in the middle of a corn field, or even that we should judge those who come to worship in clothing not as nice as our own, when that’s all they own. The point is sacrifice. Did it cost us something to come to church that morning? Did we give any thought at all to God when we picked out our clothes, or did we merely think of comfort? Did we even think about the reason we are there is to Worship? Or do we go just to get together with other “good” people? Have a little social networking session on a Sunday morning…

When I stand at my sink at 10 o’clock at night, washing yet another sink full of dirty dishes, when I want to be in bed, and offer up a prayer of thanksgiving for the food that made my dishes dirty, and the children I’m blessed to feed…that is a sacrifice of praise. When Michelle Duggar sat at 2 a.m. folding laundry and singing praise songs thanking God for clothes and children who wear them, tears streaming down her face from fatigue…that was a sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving. It cost something. It’s easy to thank God for bonus checks and healing and unexpected blessings…not so easy to thank him for unemployment and illness and broken appliances. But it’s in those difficult times, when we praise him anyway, that He is most pleased. He accepts our sacrifice and showers down blessings that we can not contain. Don’t give God your leftover money, time, talents, thoughts, effort. Give him the 1st, the best, the largest portion. Make a sacrifice.

I will not give God that which costs me nothing…

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Posted by on January 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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