“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service [worship according to some translations!]. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” Romans 12:1-2
Some people make unfathomably big sacrifices for Jesus. Some people sacrifice their very lives. Some do things for Jesus most of us can’t even imagine. Like leaving behind everything to travel across the world and live in a dangerous jungle to spread the Gospel message. Like being willing to have one’s head chopped off in a country where proclaiming Christ as Lord brings persecution that we in America can’t even fathom. Like selling everything, giving all to the poor, and walking cross country to tell every single passerby that Jesus Christ is the only way to a forever relationship with God. Like leaving behind zillion dollar jobs to start Christian schools for orphans in Africa. I started thinking about sacrifice for Christ as I considered how pitifully little I have sacrificed for Jesus – but how it still matters because anything given up for the sake of Jesus does in fact matter in the eyes of the Lord when it’s what He’s calling us to do.
I sit here on a Saturday having spent most of the day thus far writing to tell the world about God. Caring for special needs dogs most of the world wouldn’t want to do the work necessary to care for. Thinking about how I’m on the road now for nearly two years to tell the world about Jesus. How I’ve left behind family, friends, a comfy home near the beach, the potential for a high paying job, finding a man and being married, having my own family, an entertainment and social life, vacations, endless earthly pleasures, and believing time belongs to me when now I know my time belongs to Jesus.
So instead of running around my life finding things and people to make me happy and to feel good, spending my time doing pleasurable things to satisfy myself, I give 100% of my time to Jesus so He can tell me how He wants me to spend it. Even if this means spending zillions of hours in solitude praying, seeking Him, writing, publishing, and then zillions more hours hitting the streets to talk to people about God, to pray for them, encourage them, etc. My sacrifice is NOTHING – absolutely NOTHING – when compared with what people all around the world are sacrificing for God. But still, it’s sacrifice that matters. Because it’s the specific sacrifice to which God almighty has called me.
What’s your sacrifice for God, my friend?
Please don’t measure yours against anyone else’s, not mine, not another’s. Sacrifice what God wants you to give up for Him. Turn from your sins to God. Turn from self to Christ. Believe in Him as Lord. Be filled with His Spirit. Love, praise, honor, adore, worship, and sacrifice for God and for the cause of Christ being proclaimed to the world. Sacrifice what He desires. And, if you don’t know, here’s my encouragement. Seek Him. Pray to Him. Long for Him. Run after Him. Dive deep, daily, into God’s Word. Listen for His voice. Be led by His Spirit. Deny your own self. Die to you. Live for Him. And sacrifice as worship to God. Worship the Lord, my friend, worship Him with all of who you are. Be willing to give up ALL for God almighty, absolutely, for the love of Christ, the one who died on the cross and was raised from the dead so all who turn from sin and turn to Him and believe in Him as Lord are forgiven and given forever life. AMEN!