Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Can a sacrifice be for free?

Dear Lord, I finished up 2 Samuel today and it ended with a time of sacrifice and worship. I have a few notes written in my Bible that are just really convicting and very wise. I am not sure from whom they come.

We have come to the end of the chapter and God is fed up with the Isrealites once again and has decided to "deal" with them. After speaking to David through a "seer", God sends a plague on the Israelite people. David can see from a far an angel striking people with these plagues. David cries out to save these people and strike him. Once again a great leader and willing to take the heat as always. So eventually he goes to set us a sacrifice and have some worship.

David goes to Arauanh's threshing floor to make the sacrifice and Araunah wants to give him all the "things" to have the sacrifice. David states that he wants to pay for it. What good is it to sacrifice a burnt offering or anything kind of offering that costs him nothing. Wow - there is my lesson for the day.

What good is it for me to offer a sacrifice to the Lord that costs me nothing. I want it easy so often and yet God requires us to give up some things. So what does it cost or what could it cost. Well I know for me it depends on what he is asking. When You called me into speaking and more opportunities began to roll in, you called me out of almost all of my responsibilities at the church. I felt that sacrifice because I love being involved at my church. But oh the life it gave to my worship as I saw Your hand displayed in my life and circumstances. As You have called me away from P31, I have felt that sacrifice. I have missed my conversations with friends, I have missed my feeling part of a team, and I have missed not being in with a crowd. Ministry all by yourself is kind of lonely. It has been a sacrifice to me, but oh the blessing and worship I have had in seeing Your hand revealed in so many places.

When God is specific in our lives about the sacrifice this where it gives life to worship. There are times that I fast and it is a sacrifice. Nothing like Jesus did for me, but out of obedience I fast. It is during those times that I really am able to worship and feel His breath literally in my face. I don't mean to sound mystical or weirdo, freaky, but that is the only way I can describe it. That is a sacrifice that allows me to worship like no other time in my life. You are depleted of everything the world can satisfy in your most basic needs and that is when the Lord rushes in and reveals so amazingly. Now this is my life and they way I have seen Him work, it can be totally different.

Sacrifice in this passage of 2 Sam. is brought on by a need. They needed the plague to stop and God to change His mind in the way He was dealing with the Israelites. But the second point I have written down is that sacrifice is completely and absolutely free of greed. David wanted nothing for himself in this sacrifice. He wanted to free his people of the judgment God had on their lives and the pain He was afflicting.

Lord, Jesus - I can not say that I have any real physical needs - like I need new carpet or I need new clothes - no none of that stuff - those are not the needs You are talking about! In those kinds of areas I am completely filled up and I thank you for that. But I do have a need to know what you want for our lives. I have a need to know how to parent better. I have a need to be a better wife and one more willing to sacrifice for the family. I have a need to love You more completely and more sacrificially. What is it Lord? What is it that I can sacrifice for You that will cost me, but will bring life to my worship. Make my heart say that it wants nothing in return, but just sheer obedience in what you are asking. I want to be free of all greed. Only You can do that in my heart. I could not even begin to try to have pure intentions and motivations. You have to do that in me! I might add - purely a miracle when it happens!

Thank you Lord. Speak Lord, Speak!!!!!!

No comments: