Mission Statement

In classical sacrifices, the people get the good bits, and the gods get the refuse, the bits that would get thrown out otherwise.

Not our God. Leviticus (particularly Leviticus 3) describes the sacrifices that our LORD demanded from His people of Israel. God gets the kidneys, the tail, and all the fat. He gets the prime steak, He gets the best.

Today we do not literally give sacrifices of animals. For us the ultimate sacrifice has been made through our Lord, Christ Jesus. But should always be our ambition to do the same thing - to offer God the best of what we have, to offer Him the fat, and not the smoke and bones.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Not Getting the Memo

"The inheritance of the Simeonites was taken from the share of Judah, because Judah's portion was more than they needed." (From Joshua 19:9)

The tribe of Judah had more than what they needed. As such, some of what their brothers would receive came from 'their' portion.

We need to take this as a model and be willing to pass on much of what we have to make the lives of our brothers and sisters in Christ a little better, regardless of where they live. We need to be willing to give up many luxuries in order that others may have necessities such as food, clean water, medicine, and the Word of God. It is easy to claim that what we have is 'ours', that we 'earnt' it, so we can do what we like with it. But the truth is that it is all a gift from God anyway, and we need to do with all we have whatever He wants us to.

I have read several times this post at A Place Called Simplicity. It inspires me every time I read it. Here are a few passages...

Dw and I didn’t get the memo. You know what memo I mean?

The one that has been circulating for quite a few years now, throughout Christianity in the western world: that our lives are our own and our "reward" for accepting Christ is a life of pleasure. The one that says that we can pretty much do what we want as long as we “do” the Christian thing on Sundays and maybe attend a small group during the week. The one that says we can ignore the needs all around us. The one that says it really is all about making ourselves and the Christians around us very comfortable.


In fact here’s a little test: if you and/or your family are spending more money on pleasure than you are giving, then things are out of whack! Giving does not mean your tithe. Your tithe is a no-brainer - that’s 10%. Giving means ABOVE your tithe. And if each year your total of travel, manicures, pedicures, fashion, shoes, massages, facials, sporting events, purses, straightening hair, relaxing hair, perms, hair extensions, follicle implants, color treatments, fancy restaurants, hunting, fishing, golfing, boating, camping, skiing, rock climbing, fancy cars, is more than what you give above your 10%, then time to do some serious re-evaluation!

Today many of us live incredibly selfish lives. I shudder at how little some "good" Christians who earn a lot more than me give. I really do. And how they complain how they don't have any money... right before they go and play on their iphone.

We are supposed to be SET APART FROM THE WORLD. We are NOT supposed to look exactly like the world. And I'm really horrified at how so many Christians really seem to think that by doing a small thing they have covered their giving. That by sponsoring a child and giving to the Salvation Army they have become Saints. Ha! My anti-Christian Mum does that!

To whom much has been given, much is required. (Luke 12:48 - KJV) And if you're reading this, believe me, you have much. You have the internet, for goodness sake - and therefore electricity, and probably clean running water, plenty of food, shelter and clothing too. We have been given in ABUNDANCE. Don't cry poor when you spend more on chewing gum than most people earn!

There are so many ways we can make a difference. And yet we don't. Because we put ourselves first. We care about our own pleasures. We pray for ourselves (and maybe our family and friends) and wonder why our selfish prayers remain unanswered.

"What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures. You adulterous people, don't you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God." James 4:1-4.

Recently I've had a lot more prayers answered. And you know what. None of those prayers were for me. Most of them weren't even for people I know in real life. They were for different orphans who are in need of Forever Families, or who are in the process of being brought home by their Forever Families.

As I spend less (of my time and my money) on myself, I find that there is more there. More is done, more of a differnce is made. All because I made a few minor changes, like giving away a small portion of my income, or donating towards an international adoption, or praying for those I have never met.

Let us be lovers of God rather than lovers of pleasure. Let us be people who help our neighbour - even if we don't know them, or if they are "different" from us. Let us be those whose good deeds shine before the world so that they praise our Heavenly Father.

Let us be followers of Christ, and not of the World.

1 comment:

Sam-Is-Mad said...

I would like to add that most (if not all) forms of technology come into this category. Iphones are not necessities... even the internet isn't, useful, educational, and fun as it is.

But seriously, where is all of your money going? Are you acting as though your money belongs to God, or to you?