“Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God and keep your vows you made to the Most High. Then call upon Me when you are in trouble and I will rescue you and you will give Me glory.” Psalm 50: 14-15

Have you ever seen this verse before on being thankful? I recently read it during my morning devotions and it was highlighted on my heart. Did you know that your thankful attitude could be offered as a spiritual sacrifice to God? Sacrifice is surrendering something to God as an offering to Him. It’s a ‘thank offering’ that pleases His heart when it’s done from the heart with the right kind of attitude. Sacrifice is the loss of something you give up, usually for the sake of a better cause. I am presently sacrificing my time, my freedom, and my weekdays for the next two months by choosing to watch my grandson, Steel. His mother is filling in as a substitute teacher at Waialua Elementary until the end of the school year. And I want you to know that not all sacrifices we make are hard ones! Although I do feel the pain… It’s no problem to lay down my agenda with Steel, because I gain something better! I gain the benefit of getting to know my grandson better and to bond with him. He is definitely keeping me young and tired! I love it tremendously, even though some days it’s hard!

Because of Jesus’ ultimate sacrifice of laying His own life down, we are no longer required (like in Old Testament times) to offer sacrifices of the blood of animals for the forgiveness of sins. As a Christian, your sins are paid in full when you ask Jesus to be Lord of your life! But according to the Bible, the days of sacrifice aren’t over! You and I are being called to a different kind of sacrifice. And this sacrifice is supposed to be…Daily. Occurring. Every. Single. Day! We’re told to “present our bodies a living sacrifice” - Romans 12:1. And our sacrifices are pleasing to God. Hebrews 13:16 - “do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.” Sacrifice comes thru thanksgiving. “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise – the fruit of our lips that openly profess His name,” Heb. 13:15.

A sacrifice of praise is what I saw in my daughter, Venessa, just last week. It happened while we were at the beach playing with the kids. We were having so much fun throwing a small ball back and forth in the ocean. Somehow Venessa’s two beloved wedding rings were pulled off her finger and flew into the wave-tossed waters! They vanished in mere seconds! It happened so fast! Panic! Disbelief! Heart wrenching pain! Tears! Sadness! Time to move fast! Prayer! More Prayer! Boom!

We were graciously given 2 snorkeling masks from the people sitting next to us. The long search began. Aria + Kavenna were key seekers trying to find 2 tiny silver rings hidden beneath the layers of shifting sand in the bottom of the ocean! It was an impossible task ahead. But the heart felt desire; to find those hidden rings, was so much stronger than the obstacle before us. We were reminded that nothing’s impossible with God. After diligently searching for her rings, sifting and combing through the grains of sand looking for something that sparkles and shines, the rings were still not found. It was such a disappointment, but in the midst of the trouble and sadness, I witnessed my daughter’s determination to keep on trusting God and not lose heart; to not allow the enemy opportunity to rob her of her faith and joy and thankfulness to God.

In times of trouble, it definitely takes a sacrifice to thank God, doesn’t it? What is your attitude when things don’t go the way you’ve planned? Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God. You can choose to ‘lay down’ and ‘sacrifice’ your negative attitude, your disappointment, your fears, your doubts, and your ‘why me’ questions that may not get answered.

In God’s perfect timing, He graciously answered our prayers (on this day of trouble) as one by one both treasured wedding rings were found. They were discovered in completely different locations from where she had originally been tossing the ball AND the rings weren’t even close to each other! It was a HUGE miracle! God chose to rescue by delivering the rings. And He received all the glory! The lesson for me: Thank God in all things. Pray to God at all times. Honor God in all you do.

“But giving thanks is a sacrifice that truly honors Me,” Psalm 50:23.

God bless you, Karen