Sacrifice or Posturing?
These are some mighty powerful words to ponder today from My Utmost for His Highest by Oswald Chambers…
“Are you ready to be offered?
“Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I joy and rejoice with you all.” Philippians 2:17
Are you willing to be offered for the work of the faithful – to pour out your life blood as a libation on the sacrifice of the faith of others? Or do you say – “I am not going to be offered up just yet, I do not want God to choose my work. I want to choose the scenery of my own sacrifice; I want to have the right kind of people watching and saying, ‘Well done.’ ”
It is one thing to go on the lonely way with dignified heroism, but quite another thing if the line mapped out for you by God means being a door-mat under other people’s feet. Suppose God wants to teach you to say, “I know how to be abased” – are you ready to be offered up like that? Are you ready to be not so much as a drop in the bucket – to be so hopelessly insignificant that you are never thought of again in connection with the life you served? Are you willing to spend and be spent; not seeking to be ministered unto, but to minister? Some saints cannot do menial work and remain saints because it is beneath their dignity.”
I mean, it really hurts.
I have to wonder how often I am positioning myself into a comfortable scenery of my own choosing…where it looks as if I am sacrificing, but instead I am just posturing.
It struck me afresh today that while so many teachers and ministers (myself included, trust me) are proclaiming that “God wants to use you in a mighty way.” and “God has a wonderful destiny and purpose for your life” , ect, ect…. We may just be forgetting that God’s idea of significance may be vastly different than ours.
Isaiah 55:8-9 NIV “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
Mark 9:35 “Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.”
What if doing a mighty thing for God ends up only in creating a heavenly reward when I seem so concerned with what I receive here on earth?
What if pouring my life out for Jesus means only Jesus knows what I am doing?
What if I am held in high esteem by members of my church but there isn’t much real fruit being produced in my life?
See what I mean? Ouch.