Wednesday, January 4, 2012

On Being a Living Sacrifice...

Today, at the breakfast table, we read Malachi 1:6-8

“A son honors his father, and a slave his master. If I am a father, where is the honor due me? If I am a master, where is the respect due me?” says the LORD Almighty.
It is you priests who show contempt for my name. But you ask, ‘How have we shown contempt for your name?'By offering defiled food on my altar. “But you ask, ‘How have we defiled you?“By saying that the LORD’s table is contemptible. 8 When you offer blind animals for sacrifice, is that not wrong? When you sacrifice lame or diseased animals, is that not wrong? Try offering them to your governor! Would he be pleased with you? Would he accept you?” says the LORD Almighty.

Besides being about the proper way to honor God, I think it also forces us to question ourselves: what type of sacrifice am I to God? Am I (in terms of my actions, my thoughts, my heart, my presentation) an acceptable sacrifice? Do I approach the altar looking like a fine sheep, but inside am really diseased inside?

How often do we go to church on the heels of a fight with our spouse, clothed in anger and resentment? How often do we lose our patience with our children during the ride? There's definite more to the statement of putting on our "Sunday best" once we enter the church doors.

The Bible says we are to "present ourselves as a living sacrifice"....and today's scripture reminds me to ensure I am a complete sacrifice, inside and out. God know my heart and it's condition. Do I treat my governors the same way? Do I treat my husband or my children as I do outside people? Would I raise my voice to a brother in the church or the pastor -- why then would I do it to my husband? Why do I go all out to prepare the house for company (whether it's making an extra nice meal or creating the "atmosphere") but don't go to this level on regular days with family?

A false hospitality.

A contemptible sacrifice.

Here's a wonderful song: Lord Prepare Me

Lord, Prepare Me to be a Sanctuary
Pure and Holy
Tried and True
With Thanksgiving
I'll be a Living Sanctuary for You

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Thank you so much for sharing your heart!