Monday, October 13, 2014

What God Wants from Me (& You)

It's easy to get off track sometimes. We get stuck in our own little worlds at this time of year because we've finally gotten back into to the groove of the school year. There are oodles of agro-festivals--corn, pumpkins, apples-- and plenty of last-minute outside festivities--hay rides, corn mazes, school carnivals.

Everybody's getting in their last kicks in the great outdoors before the first winter snow hits.

It's easy to grow busy and, therefore, complacent.

One place where we should never grow complacent, though, is at the foot of the cross.
A picture of Bible Study complacency: Kitty sleeping on the job.
A theme God has brought up in my own personal study (and even in yesterday's sermon at church) has been about His greatest desire from us.

He wants our hearts.

Our pastor preached from Ezekiel chapters 8-11 yesterday, about God physically leaving the tabernacle because the people of Israel had constantly pursued idol worship.

Yes, we Christians participate in idol worship when we don't place God first in our lives. We might worship the idol of our children or family. We might worship the idol of our ministry and what we have accomplished for God.

He is not interested in our efforts, our money, or our sacrifices if they are not done with the right heart attitude (i.e. keeping Him in His rightful place as first).

In Psalm 50, God says He doesn't want our sacrifices.
"For every beast of the forest is mine, and the cattle upon the thousand hills. I know all the fowls of the mountains: and the wild beasts of the field are mine." (vv.10-11)
God doesn't need 
       our efforts, 
          our money, 
            our stuff, 
        or our sacrifices. 

Besides, we can't give God anything that doesn't belong to Him already--except for our hearts. And He won't force us to do that because it's our choice to give our hearts to Him. We need to heed His advice:
"Offer unto God thanksgiving; and pay thy vows unto the most High: and call upon me in the day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me." (vv. 14-15)
In Psalm 51, David says,
"The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise." (v. 17)
It doesn't matter how much we put in the offering plate, how much time we spend at church "doing ministry," or how celebrated our personalities are in Christian circles.

What's important to God, what matters most of all, is where our hearts are focussed. If our hearts are not humbled and focussed on God, they are not focussed on the right place.

I'm not speaking about some emotional trip, either. If you want to hear God speaking to you, then you need to get into His Word every day. Start reading Psalms or Proverbs or the Gospel of John.

We have to side with God against ourselves. We have to give Him every area of our hearts. Even if it means doing less at church so we can take care of our families the way He requires us to. Even if it means giving up a precious extra 20 minutes of sleep each day to read His Word.

God wants your heart. Does He have it all or does He have it in part?

In His Great Love,
--Mrs. D.