Have you ever been out shopping for something that you’re desperately wanting? You’re met by an overbearing salesman; he tries to throw things in for an additional cost thinking you’d do it. Well think about it like this; you’re wanting a new 2012 Chevy Camaro in red. You know exactly what you want so you start looking and shortly after you meet the salesman. He says the car you’re looking at is fabulous, but that he’d like to throw in this and that. Instead of black he advises silver, instead of the 2012 he advises the 2010. After hours and hours of grueling stand offs you just plainly say, “I just want the 2012 black Camaro”. Now he knows that is all you’re interested in.
Change perspectives and think of it this way. God is pursuing you, He wants you and nothing else. When you first meet Him you say okay here I am and here’s my tithe, and here are my sacrifices to you, and here is my resume of all my accomplishments. You talk yourself up and think you’re hot stuff. After hours God plainly says, “I just want you”. You protest, no you want me to sacrifice this, “I just want you” he says. What about my accomplishments, what do I need to do for you? He repeats, “I just want you”.
To think that the God of the universe just wants me is mind boggling and sometimes I almost don’t believe it, I let grace be a non factor and I try to let my accomplishments outweigh my wrongs. (legalism) Grace is hard for me to understand. Mess up and always be forgiven, act unlovable yet always be loved. It’s something my human mind is trying to grasp yet not doing a great job of it. I try to work towards righteousness and earn my way to better standing in Christ’s eyes; I try to lay my sacrifices down to atone for my sin as a sign of repentance when all I’m asked to do is give God me. Not my tithes. Not my sacrifices. Not my time. I’m asked to give Him me, and everything that encompasses. Time, sacrifices, and tithing are big parts of it but if the motives are to atone rather than to show love and obedience the your effort is in vain.
Abraham had this happen when he went up to offer Isaac. l God told him to sacrifice Isaac yet that was not what happened, God provided a ram to atone. You then see the first mention of a new covenant, one that finally atoned for all sin. No more sacrifices, no more burnt offerings. Just the daily worship, adoration, and obedience of His people. He isn’t happy with sacrifices any longer, no burnt offerings will suffice, he wants obedience from His children. Love and adoration.
You break all the rules your parents set in place then get them a $10 Starbucks card to make up for it and they might laugh in your face (that’s what mine would do) that isn’t what God is doing. He doesn’t laugh at your empty sacrifices. He just wants more. He wants you. This is not for your friend, not for your family member. This is for you. Imagine Him saying, “you don’t have to do anything, no gifts no nothing, just come. I just want you.”
He just wants you like He just wants me. Don’t settle for giving God your stuff. Give Him your life.