Writer, Church leader, Eccentric Nut, Marketer

I'm Church Leader, Writer, Speaker, Marketer, Kindness Project Founder, Broadcaster and Superhero. But most important I'm a Husband, Father and a worshiper of Jesus.

24 March 2010

God doesn’t deserve my best

Read an EXCELLENT blog post this morning at Nickcarnes.com and I want to repost it in it's entirety. Last night during our prayer night at Freedom House, I found myself praying for Christians to give the control over our "rest" to God. Often we take control over our own time & energy and ration what we're willing we give to God because we "have to take care of ourselves" first. The reality is that God wants to GIVE us what we need to thrive (including rest) when we GIVE Him the best of us. Doing the opposite is actually more serious than we first think.

Check out Nick's thoughts...

God doesn’t deserve my best,” is exactly what we say when we as “Christ Followers” decide to be consumers rather than contributors. I listened to a message by Perry Noble the other day from NewSpring’s Practical Atheist series. He referenced the verses where Cain and Abel present their offerings to the Lord and how Cain just gave some of his crops as an offering to the Lord, while Abel gave his first and best lamb as an offering. While the main point of Perry’s usage of the Scripture was to point out that the tithe did not go away with the law since it was present 500+ years before the law was given, something different stood out to me.

I’ve practically grown up in church. I’ve been a ministry leader, staff, volunteer, and a plain ‘ol church attender. I’ve heard messages on giving and tithing several times in the past, but nothing has prepared me for the harsh reality that there are more Christians like Cain than there are like Abel in most churches. I remember hearing about Cain as a child in our Bible stories. He got a bad rap, I guess it stemmed mostly from him murdering Abel. But the more I think about it, there is more focus put on his being a murderer than there is his attitude that God did not deserve his best. I wonder if we avoid that foundational truth because its our attitude too? I wonder if that’s why people church hop and get angry when the pastor preaches on giving and money? Could it be because their attitude is that God does not deserve their best?

This verse has never stuck out to me until I looked at it over the weekend, check it out…

Why are you so angry?” the Lord asked Cain. “Why do you look so dejected? You will be accepted if you do what is right. But if you refuse to do what is right, then watch out! Sin is crouching at the door, eager to control you. But you must subdue it and be its master.” Genesis 4:6-7

What was the right thing in this situation? Abel’s income came through being a shepherd. Cain’s income came through harvesting the land. Both brought an offering to the Lord, because the Lord had blessed them both with a profit and a means of living. The difference is, Abel brought his first and his best to God, Cain just brought a random selection, but it was definitely not his best. God’s response was that Cain would be accepted if he only did what was right. Cain knew what was right, but his attitude directed his actions. He did not feel God deserved his best, therefore he did not give God his best. The biggest part of this verse to me is where God points out, that sin is crouching at Cain’s door waiting to control him because he lacked the heart to put God first and to give him his best.

There are Christians all over the world who do this all the time. They won’t or they can’t give God their best because they are driving it, or living in it, or wearing it. There are Christians all over the world who want to tell the church what they want to consume from the church, but they refuse to contribute to the vision God has given the church.

Matthew 6:21 says, “Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.

I believe that is what God was telling Cain in Genesis. Watch out! Sin will control your desires when God does not deserve the first and best of your treasures.

Are there areas in your life or in the life of your family that sin has control of? It may start with your desire to be a consumer rather than a contributor and the attitude that God does not deserve your best!

Just a thought!

1 comment:

Nick said...

Hey Dave!
Thanks for visiting my blog and for re-posting my thoughts on this. Glad it was of use to you :)

Shine On!

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