I was reading in 2 Kings about the kingdom of Israel and the incredible sins that they had committed shortly before their capture by Assyria. They would sacrifice to every idol possible, but the most tragic thing that I saw was that they actually sacrificed their children, their own sons and daughters, instead of following the Lord.
It really got me thinking. What do we sacrifice when we avoid calling on the Lord? I’ve heard the question phrased, ‘what do we sacrifice for the Lord?’ but I want to talk about what we sacrifice when we forget to turn to the Lord. Any time we don’t call on the Lord, whether for help or in an attitude of gratitude, we are sacrificing something that God wants to gives us.
If we try to tackle tough situations on our own, then we are giving up the hope and peace that God promises us in Matthew chapter 11. “Then Jesus said, ‘Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bare, and the burden I give you is light.”
God wants us to go to Him in times of trouble. He wants us to trust Him with our trials, when we’re week. For it’s in our weakness that His glory is able to shine in our lives. (2 Corinthians 12:9) So we need to call on Him, otherwise we are not only sacrificing hope and peace, but a chance to show God’s glory in our lives.
Conversely, if we fail to praise God during our victories in life, then we are sacrificing a joy that can not be expressed.
“Yes, the Lord has done amazing things for us. What joy!” (Psalm 126:3 NLT)
God wants us to experience great joy in our lives, but what joy is there when we celebrate victories apart from the only One who can truly give joy. Any victory apart from God is empty and meaningless. It’s only through rejoicing in what He has done for us that we can experience a joy previously unknown and unexperienced.
We sacrifice more by failing to call on God than we do by trusting in Him. The promises and gifts that God wants to bestow on us because of our faith in Him are unattainable if we turn our backs on Him when we should be calling out His name.
Dear Lord. I pray that you will help me to remember your part in everything that happens in my life. I want to call on your promise to give me an abundant life by praising you in good times and calling for your help in the tough times. Help me to acknowledge you in every part of my life, and I pray that you will be glorified by the way I live. Amen.