Tag Archives: living sacrifice

A VIP


Several years ago, the company I was doing a store visit for the company I work for. The store was very busy and there was about a thirty minute wait to see a rep. I was making sure everyone was helped in order and was adding them to the queue. A blonde lady walked in with big sunglasses, leopard print clothes, and a small dog in her purse. When I told her she had to wait, she said, “But I’m a VIP!” I said, “I’m sorry, ma’am. Who are you?” She told me her name, but I didn’t recognize it. I said, “I don’t know who you are, but you’ll have to wait like everyone else.”

She asked for a manager. She insisted she was a VIP and didn’t wait in lines. The manager went through the same thing and gave the same answer. Finally it hit me. “Do you mean you’re a part of our VIP program?” “Yes!” “Oh, well that doesn’t exclude you from waiting in lines, it just gives you discounts,” I replied. Over and over though, she kept repeating that she was a VIP and deserved special treatment. I pulled up our VIP program and showed her, but she didn’t want to hear it. In her mind, she was more than a VIP customer, she thought she really was a VIP.

It reminded me of the seven sons of Sceva. They thought they were someone because they were sons of a Jewish High Priest. They went around casting out demons in people by saying, “I command you in the name of Jesus, whom Paul preaches!” Well in Acts 19:15, a demon called them out on it. The evil spirit said to them, “I know Jesus, and I know about Paul; but you—who are you?” (GNT) These guys thought they were VIP’s in the spiritual realm, but the demons didn’t even know who they were.

Who are you? That question goes out to each of us today. Do we know who we are in Christ or are we trying to get by using the faith of our parents? Have you made the sacrifices in prayer, in the Word, and in living the Christian life so that you’re known in the spiritual realm? In God’s kingdom, being a VIP isn’t about looking and acting the part. If you want to be a who’s who in God’s kingdom, you’re going to have to be a living sacrifice that’s pleasing to God. He rewards humility over pride and suffering over pleasure.

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A Blank Check

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If someone wrote you a blank check, how much would you write it out for? Would you write it out for millions of dollars so you wouldn’t have a care in the world? Would you write it out to cover your basic needs so you wouldn’t be “greedy”? Would you keep all the money or give some away to others in need? Maybe you would write it all out to an organization that is near to your heart. It’s an interesting question I think. I’ve never been given a blank check nor have I written one. I think it would be cool either way to be a part of something like that.

I’ve been reading “Good to Great in God’s Eyes” by Chip Ingram and in the chapter “Make Great Sacrifices”, he challenges the reader to write a blank check to God with our lives. It seems easy to do at first, but then you start to think about that blank. Will God cash that in for everything you have? Will He just ask for what He needs in this moment? What will it cost you ultimately? With the questions comes fear and fear keeps us from leaving that check blank. It either causes us to put an amount in there, limitations on it or stipulations.

Didn’t jesus tell us that God was a good father? Didn’t He say that if earthly fathers could give good gifts, how much more so our Heavenly Father? Then why are we so afraid to write that check out? Are we afraid He will make us destitute? Psalms 37:5 says, “I have never seen the righteous forsaken nor his seed begging for bread.” So that’s not it. Is it that we think He will send us to some remote part of the world that we’ll hate? I don’t think He’d do that either. He knows that you need to be happy to thrive and do His work.

The truth is that we see our lives as our own and not His. That’s not easy to write and I’m sure it’s not easy to hear. If we truly believed I Corinthians 6:19-20 that’s says, “You are not your own, you were bought with a price”, we’d be willing to write that check out to God. If we truly believed it when we say, “Everything I have belongs to God,” we’d be more willing to give up our possessions for the Kingdom. We would ask God how much He wants us to give instead of just giving Him 10%. We would be willing to relocate wherever He needed us, give up that lucrative salary and do whatever He asked.

As it is, most of us live good Christian lives instead of great ones because we aren’t willing to let go of the temporary things for the eternal things. We aren’t willing to give up our sight so we can walk by faith. I believe the early church turned the world upside down as Acts 17:6 says because they understood what it meant to offer themselves as living sacrifices (living blank checks). They got it that their lives weren’t their own. What if we started living like that? How different would the world be if we wrote God a blank check with our lives? How different would your life be?

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