Finding God's Winning Spirit

Sacrifice

August 14, 2015 | Greg Smith | Sports

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Any athlete worth his or her salt knows what it means to sacrifice. No matter if it is through hours of practice, following a regimented diet or monitoring sleep, athletes have to make sacrifices.  They know that there is a correlation between sacrifice and success, that one increases the chance of the other. 

The player who lays down a sacrifice bunt, takes a charge or waits to the last minute to make the triple option pitch understands what it means to sacrifice self for team.  Mature athletes know that whatever is sacrificed pales in comparison to what can be achieved.

If one had to describe the life of Christ in one word it would have to be sacrifice.  If we want to model Christ then our Christian lives should be sacrificial lives.  This is precisely what Paul tells us in Ephesians 5:1-2 when he writes, “Be ye therefore imitators of God, … even as Christ also loved you, and gave himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God”(ASV).  The problem is that many Christians do not understand the New Testament concept of sacrifice.

Most of us hear the word sacrifice and we equate it with forfeiting something or losing something we like or value.  This is not what God is asking us to do – this is not even consistent with Webster’s definition.  The dictionary defines sacrifice as “an act of offering to a deity something precious” or “to surrender something for the sake of something else.”  If we look closely at Webster’s two meanings of sacrifice we realize that we do not lose anything. 

If the first meaning is correct then we are to offer God something that is precious.  What could this be, what could we possibly have that God would deem precious?  The answer of course is our hearts.  God wants us back so he can make us whole.  Giving ourselves to God simply means putting him first.  This is what Jesus is talking about in Luke 9:23 when he says, “…. if anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me” (NKJV). In essence we are asked to give God ourselves and become complete – this is not forfeiting: this is winning.

The second meaning of sacrifice tells us to surrender something for the sake of something else.  Some individuals view surrender as defeat or forfeiting something they value.  This is not the New Testament concept of surrender at all.  We are simply asked to exchange a broken life for a full life.  God is offering us the chance to trade a worried heart for a peaceful heart, a troubled mind for a calm mind and weariness for rest.  Sacrifice takes faith and we cannot have new unless we surrender the old. This is not losing this is gaining – this is not defeat it is victory!

 

 

                        (Excerpt from Think F.A.S.T.® : A Christian Game Plan )

Amen. Great post Greg
Posted by Terry slaughter on
Amen. Great post Greg.
Posted by Terry slaughter on
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