Practical suggestions for offering sacrifice to God

15 02 2016

There are many practices which can help you at the marker of sacrifice. Confession of all known sin, especially in the presence of others you trust, can bring wonderful cleansing if you mean it from your heart. Naming the sin or practice for what it is can clarify the issue which needs to be sacrificed. Renunciation – a turning away from that which you were doing or thinking – can help you put to death that which you are leaving at the cross. Consecration is a holy confirmation of a decision to repent. These acts could be observed in some ceremonial or formal way to add importance. A communion service can be an important time to confess and solidify the work of sacrifice in your life.

There are very likely attachments in the spiritual realm which must be dealt with. You may have given place in your heart to a spirit of lust, greed, power, or such as these. This is a larger subject than we can deal with here, and one that is often dispelled or ignored, but I encourage you to discuss this with a godly believer who can draw on passages such as Ephesians six. There are some good books on this subject; just be sure to choose balanced writers and not extremists.

Confusion may figure into this part of the trail. Satan is a beguiler and deceiver. Your circumstances may be so complex that confusion becomes a byproduct. Stress may cause you to function at less than your normal capacity. Your health may suffer, even severely. What a guide we have in Jesus. Who can know all that caused Him to cry out, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” You can be sure He will not be condemning of you when you are confused.

Friends may seek to comfort you, but few can walk where you are walking. Their attempts to help you through this time may seem hurtful. They may share scriptures with you intending to encourage you, but it will seem like they are belittling the seriousness by throwing a verse at it. Try not to judge or resent their efforts. Likely, they mean well. When they have their death-like experience, you will be more sensitive to them as a result of your season of sacrifice.

What should you do when, even while you are trying to sacrifice all to God, someone or something comes along and adds offense to an already horrible time? How can you avoid a setback at a critical season? The only advice I can offer is to admit to God in prayer that you have reached your limit. Tell Him you want to extend grace to others, that you know Jesus said “Father forgive them for they know not what they do,” but that God will have to give you grace enough because you don’t have it yourself. Cast your care on the Lord, for He cares for you.

Review some of the scriptures we have shared above. Meditate on them, and pray them back to God. Above all, remember that Jesus meets you at your Golgotha. He knows the pain of sacrifice, and since the Spirit of God dwells in you as a believer, you have the holy presence of Christ with you. The One who prayed, “Into Thy hands I commit My spirit” is there to help you commit your spirit into the loving hands of your Father in heaven.

I cannot say how long your season of sacrifice will last. It may be as brief as a minute or a day. It may be of the sort that extends for months or years. But of this I am sure: God does not leave anyone hanging any longer than needed. Crucifixion is not the end, but a passage to what is next. So don’t lose heart. God is able. He will take glory from your sacrifice, and move you on to the purposes He has in mind for you.

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