Sacrifice is a scary word. Most of us relate the term to giving something dear to us away. It’s so uncomfortable to the point where we avoid the topic with cultural noise and chatter. This is the third time He has called me to sacrifice the same thing; my thorn. One of the questions I find myself facing is, am I willing to give it up for what He has for me instead? Exchange something that I can see for something that I cannot see? At what cost?
Most times, we choose not to yield, but I can’t help but feel that “third time’s the charm” here. Have you ever been in a space in life where God grants you promises, vision, and speaks so directly to you in relation to what He has for your life? The ironic part is that we get caught up in the promises and fail to realize that the path to the promise won’t be what we think it will be. Our “yes” rides on a wave of an emotional high as we surrender, but what happens when that wave subsides and He asks you to yield something over to Him and the promises have yet to show face? In my daily reading, the story of Abraham and the sacrifice of his son, Isaac, has been pivotal in its context. I couldn’t wrap my head around the fact that He was willing to give away something He longed for years for. Part of the story that I never read is in Hebrews 11:18, Abraham reckoned that God could raise His son from the dead so He walked in faith when God spoke.
Then I got to thinking….
This is the kind of faith my heart longs for in the low moments. It’s so easy to give God your “yes” when you’re riding a spiritual high and then crash hard in the moments when you have nothing to sustain you. What if that sustenance that we are looking for in the low moments yields itself in the form of resurrection? If God asks me to give something away, and sacrifice it, that must mean a few things that our human mind can make sense of.
- He will restore what was sacrificed and make it brand new.
- He can resurrect what you surrendered merely based on the fact that you were willing to surrender it.
- If He is asking you to remove or get rid, that must mean He wants open space to fill it with something more purposeful and prosperous.
So then I ask myself, why would I hold onto anything He asks me to get rid of? When we keep a tight grasp or only get rid of parts of the whole that needs to be released, we aren’t practicing faith. Most times, what we are holding onto becomes heavy like chains and the longer we hold tight, the harder it is to let go. We become bound. We believe we need what we can’t let go of.
Maybe that thing is tied up in your identity but He wants to give you a new one. Maybe that thing appeases your addiction but He wants to give you something that fulfills your every need. Maybe that thing is something you worship that keeps you in bondage, but He wants to introduce you to “self” in true freedom through Him. Maybe, just maybe, what He is asking you to release is the key to Him transcending your promises to the visible atmosphere. The meme comes to mind of Jesus holding a big teddy bear behind His back and the small child unwilling to yield his little teddy bear over. This is us. We don’t realize that tight grasp is what keeps us from larger blessings in life.
The thing about blessings is that from a cultural standpoint, we see them as bigger homes, larger cars, a bigger platform, but what if the larger blessings begin with peace of mind, character development, being a blessing to others, positioning for His purpose, stripping of identities that we adopted, all in order to receive His fullness in whole. Seek first the kingdom, He says, then everything else will be added. I can make peace with being blessed along the way. I want to live in overflow so much that those around me are changed because I simply yielded what He asked me to surrender in obedience. In the grand scheme of life, I wonder if the surrender is just a drop in the bucket compared to the larger teddy bear behind His back. Sometimes it feels like He is just waiting to grace us with fullness. It’s us that gets in the way. It’s us that rejects the unknown because of what we see in front of us.
What if we were bold enough to trust that if I give Him something, He not only has the power to bring it back to life, but He also has the power to restore it to more than it ever was before. With that, I can trust Him with a command, especially when a promise is attached. How could I be so dumb to think that what’s in my hand can’t be restored and multiplied when I place it in His hands?
Even still, He gives grace to those that take a little longer, but why prolong your own fullness?
Hebrews 11:17–19 -” By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had embraced the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God has said to him, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” Abraham reasoned that God could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking he did receive Isaac back from death.”