The word sacrifice isn’t necessarily one that gives us the warm fuzzies, is it? When I hear that word, I immediately think “ugh, this is going to mess with my comfort!”
As human beings, sacrifice is not something that comes naturally for us, especially in today’s society where we have almost every comfort known to man and get aggravated at even the smallest inconvenience. Heaven forbid that the Starbucks has already closed and we have to settle for gas station coffee … oh the inhumanity!
From the very beginning of time, even as early as Cain and Abel, God’s word shows us many pictures of sacrifice. Throughout the Old Testament, sacrifice was an important part of the people’s relationship with the Lord. In the book of First Samuel we find the story of Hannah, who was one of the wives of Elkanah. His other wife had given her husband many children; however, Hannah was unable to have children of her own. Rather than Hannah taking matters into her own hands as other women of the Word had done, she earnestly prayed for many years for a child. She even made a deal with the Lord that, if He would give her a son, she would give him back to be used of the Lord.
“Lord Almighty, if you will only look on your servant’s misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the Lord for all the days of his life…” 1 Samuel 1:11
God answered Hannah’s prayer, she became pregnant and gave birth to Samuel. The Word says she raised him until he was weaned and then took him to the temple and turned him over to the Priest to be raised in the service of the Lord.
And here’s the point in the story that just tugs at my heartstrings!
Until he was weaned??
He was still just a baby! As a mother, I can’t imagine how gut wrenching it must have been for Hannah to honor her promise to the Lord and leave her first born … a baby she so desperately longed for, but the Bible says she did, without hesitation.
There have been many times in my life the Lord has asked me to give something up for Him. The sacrifice is rarely easy and, at times, even heartbreaking! It’s taken me many years, lots of trials and even some painful seasons to learn the lesson of sacrifice. See, when we’re in the midst of the sacrifice, it’s hard to see past whatever we’re letting go of, but the Lord sees the bigger picture.
He sees into eternity and knows that, whatever our sacrifice, He has something so much better in store for us.
Sweet sister, God will never take something from you that He will not replace with something better! The word tells us that the Lord blessed Hannah with another three sons and two daughters so there’s no doubt the Lord rewarded her for her selfless sacrifice!
What might the Lord be asking you to let go of?
Does He want you to offer your time to serve others? Or perhaps He’s asking you to give of your finances to help a family in need or tithe more sacrificially to the local church. Maybe He’s asking you to let go of a toxic relationship or a group of friends you know isn’t good for you. Or possibly He’s asking you to disconnect from social media.
Whatever it is the Lord is speaking to you about, trust that He has a plan and a purpose for the sacrifice that’s so much greater than our human eyes can see or our minds can fathom. Step out in faith and make the sacrifice He’s laid on your heart … the return on your investment will be far greater than the investment itself.
See, He doesn’t need whatever it is He’s asking from you … He’s God! What He’s looking for is your faithfulness to make the sacrifice. In the words of Dr. Charles Stanley, “Don’t underestimate what God will do in your life if you obey Him!”
Amber Edwards is married and has two teenagers. While she works as a Paralegal, her true heart is for others. This passion led her to start a blessing bag ministry for the homeless, which affords her many opportunities to share her faith and love for the Lord. Amber grew up in Birmingham and is an active member at Church of the Highlands where she serves on the Events Team and co-leads small groups.