Parting Words From The WORD…

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In this achievement-oriented world, it’s easy to get caught up in the accomplishment, in the doing of the good thing. I have to admit, I sometimes come to the end of the day and recount all the good things I did for Him. I sometimes equate the sacrifice of time and money and giftings as evidence of my stand with Christ. It’s a fragile stand.

Yes, God expects us to use our talents in writing and speaking and drama to glorify Him and lift up His Great Name. But if we’re doing it out of a disobedient heart, it’s all in vain.

Saul fought the Amalekites and won, just as God had commanded, but he didn’t do it in the way God commanded. Instead of wiping out the Amalekites and all they owned, he decided to bring the best of the herd back as a sacrificial offering to God. He also brought back Agag the King.

In 1 Samuel 15:22 Samuel tells Saul:

“Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the voice of the LORD? To obey is better than sacrifice…”

Wow.

All our quality, hard-earned, and often sacrificial, deeds–our compelling fiction, our powerful devotions, our heartfelt non-fiction, our scripts and music and plays–are worthless if we’re sacrificing in our own way.

Instead of being an act of sacrifice, it’s an act of disobedience.

What has called you to do? What has He called me to do? Are we obedient in our efforts to sacrifice our time and sleep and money and talents?

We must remember, obedience is better than sacrifice.

I pray God’s blessing on the work of your hands and your hearts,

Vonda

(Photo courtesy of ChristianPhotos.net)

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  • Mostonvt

    The snag is–what has He called us to do? Whenever I get confused, I stop doing and start praying! Timely post, especially as we think through Lent and what that means to each of us.

    • http://www.VondaSkelton.com Vonda Skelton

      Great point, Marcia! Thanks for the reminder.

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  • http://www.susanstilwell.com Susan Rinehart Stilwell

    I confess I get tangled in the “how many things” trap myself. Thanks for the sweet remind that our best offering is obedience.
    Have a great weekend!

    • http://www.VondaSkelton.com Vonda Skelton

      Thanks for the reminder that I’m not alone in this struggle, Susan. :-) Blessings on your weekend as well!

  • Lori Stanley Roeleveld

    Thank you for this, Vonda. A beautiful and compelling reminder to stay the course He sets and not veer off with the prevailing wind of our own driven hearts.

    • http://www.VondaSkelton.com Vonda Skelton

      So true, Lori! Thank you for the confirmation!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000117958323 Barb Winters

    And Haman (the one who tried to destroy the Jews in the book of Esther) was a descendant of the Agag King. So our disobedience can have a tremendous ripple effect.

    Thank you, Vonda.

    • http://www.VondaSkelton.com Vonda Skelton

      Wow, Barb, I’ve never made that connection. Thank you for another great detail of how disobedience affects the overarching perfect plan God has for us!

  • cindypatterson3

    Good reminder. Thank you, Vonda!

    • http://www.VondaSkelton.com Vonda Skelton

      Thank you for stopping by, Cindy. It’s always a joy to hear from you. :-)

  • Janelle

    I Cor 3:13 comes to mind,”His work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work.”

    It’s my constant reminder for a heart check.

    • http://www.VondaSkelton.com Vonda Skelton

      Great reminder for us, Janelle. His Word is true…over and over again.

  • Eddie Snipes

    Very true. This reminds me of the Apostle Paul’s words, If I do this willingly, I have a reward, but if against my will, I still have the calling of the gospel.”

    It’s too easy for me to think I’m doing God a service, but the real sacrifice is a heart of praise that leads to obedience. Thank you for this wonderful reminder!

    • http://www.VondaSkelton.com Vonda Skelton

      Welcome back, Eddie! I hope things have slowed down a little in your neck of the woods.

      And thank you for another example of God’s Truth. :-)

  • Jeanne Doyon

    Great post, Vonda.
    Jeanne

    • http://www.VondaSkelton.com Vonda Skelton

      Thanks for stopping by, Jeanne. Another reminder that His Word is full and rich, if only we will read and apply it to our lives.