“Father, make of me a crisis man. Bring those I contact to decision. Let me not be a milepost on a single road;
make me a fork
, that men must turn one way or another on facing Christ in me.” - Jim Elliot

Monday, December 30, 2013

No, I insist on paying you for it.

The Ethiopia/Uganda Chronicles
Chapter 2 - Sacrifice



Linda, me, Beth, Jackie and Charlotte
January 2010 - Siesta Scripture Memory Team Celebration


Obedience often means sacrifice.  And when you are willing to be obedient to an omniscient God, He may ask you to sacrifice something that you didn't realize the obedience would cost you.  And He won't always tell you why. 

My trip to Ethiopia/Uganda physically begins on February 5th of 2014.  And the physical part of it all costs quite a chunk of change.  Anthony and I had agreed that it would be our 25th Wedding Anniversary gift to one another, so there wasn't a need for me to be focused on the cost of the trip.  Still I kept having this impression from the Lord that I needed to raise part of my funds if not all of them.

God reminded me of 2 Samuel 24 where King David wants to build an altar to God on Araunah's threshing floor. And Araunah offered it freely to David, but David said, "No, I insist on paying you for it. I will not sacrifice to the Lord my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing.” And that is how I felt. That I didn't want to offer a sacrifice that cost me nothing.

So there were a couple personal "conveniences" I decided to cancel and that would end up covering almost half the trip. And so I thought I was good.

But then God impressed on me that I should sacrifice something else.  Something of my heart.  What is it, Lord?  What would you want me to sacrifice of my heart to you?  The SSMTC.  The Siesta Scripture Memory Team Celebration in Houston, Texas with Beth Moore.  I have been planning on attending for at least two years.  I have been memorizing the book of James in preparation.  The SSMTC is held in late January.  I would have to buy an airline ticket, rent a hotel room and a rental car.  And although I share these costs with other precious Siestas/sisters... it still costs. 

And I would give up meeting with those precious sisters that I had met in 2010.  And then we roomed together in 2012.  And Charlotte and I were planning on reciting the book of James together in 2014.  The same version even.  The discontinued NIV 1984.

And so it was the SSMTC.  The financial cost of it.  Not just giving up a couple conveniences... but would I give up my heart's desire to go to Houston.  Why, yes, Lord. I would give up everything to You, of course. 

And so there it was.  A sacrifice.  Sacrifices.  A heart's desires placed on an altar.

And of course, an omniscient God would know that me taking a trip to Houston in late January right before a trip to Ethiopia/Uganda would be physically taxing.  And mentally taxing.  (I only have so much grace to give when I travel.)  And the planning.  God knew I would not have the concept of the amount of planning necessary for a trip to Ethiopia/Uganda.  No idea at all... even though Anthony has been multiple times.  I had no idea at all.

And so... lesson learned.  Obedience often means sacrifice.  And when you are willing to be obedient to an omniscient God, He may ask you to sacrifice something that you didn't realize the obedience would cost you.  And He doesn't have to tell you why.  But I trust that He knows why... and that He has an even greater plan to bring Him glory.

 


Praise the Lord!
Let all that I am praise the Lord.
Psalm 146:1 






For more of my thoughts on my trip to Ethiopia and Uganda visit here. 

1 comment:

bp said...

Thank you for sharing your heart as you go on this journey. I enjoy reading them.