Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Empty hands

No one is to appear before me empty-handed.
 --Exodus 24: 20. NIV

I read God's words to Moses this morning and thought, Whoa! Then I looked at my hands. 

When the time comes to say hello to God, face-to-face, what will be in my hands?

Oh, don't get me wrong, I know I can't take anything with me, but what have I given to Him that I'm leaving behind? Have my hands been a blessing to others?

What is an important legacy? One that God smiles over and blesses?

We'll all have different answers. Children, ministry, jobs, good deeds, support of pastor and church, talents, etc. I'm sure various ideas come to your mind as you read this. 

But are those the "things" that God really wants?

The Psalmist, King David, was wealthy and powerful. He was a talented dude too with lots of "things" to hand to God, and he brought multitudes of offerings to the Lord. He preferred sacrifices that cost him something. He made once this statement:

But the king replied to Araunah, "No, I insist on paying you for it. I will not sacrifice to the LORD my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing." So David bought the threshing floor and the oxen and paid fifty shekels of silver for them.--2 Samuel 24-24.

Hmmm. I wonder if I've surrendered anything that truly cost me something. That "something" could be time, money, talent, even life itself. I give offerings, but how much real expenditure is in them? Have I really, ever given up something I wanted to keep? A gift I couldn't live without? Have I given an artifact or asset that cost me an enormous submission?

That's kinda like the age old debate, "How much goodness is enough?"

David expressed the true sacrifice that pleases God in Psalm 51:16-17:

You do not delight in sacrifice, or would bring it. You do not take pleasure in brunt offerings. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart. O God, you will not despise.

Ah ha! Now I know the gift that pleases God the most. What He wants to see in my hands is my heart.

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