John 7:37-38 On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.”
I took the team to the first family, where we were greeted by the boy pictured above, and we were able to pray for them and bless them. It was good to be in this place of ministry once again, but I was sad that we did not get to do more personal ministry. Even as we finished up giving away the last bags, the rain began to come. From that point for the rest of the day it has rained with more or less intensity.
This is the third week is the Simple Discipleship series. Here are the first two messages in this series.
Here is the topic of study for next week:
- Prayer and Fasting
- The Scriptures for study are: Daniel 10:1-14, Isaiah 58, Matthew 6:5-21, Habakkuk 2:1-4, Mark 9:14-29, and 1 Timothy 2:1-4.
Worship and Sacrifice
- My notes can be found here: Simple Discipleship Week 3
- Here is the Audio Teaching from Feb 17, 2016: http://lwcburleson.sermon.net/main/main/20609931
As we begin learning about Worship and Sacrifice, we must first ask ourselves,
What is Worship?
What is Sacrifice?
If we do not have a proper understanding of these things, then as we discuss them, we will never come to a true understanding. My prayer is that as we investigate the scriptures, that we will understand even more the meaning of these and how we can apply them to our lives.
Worship – Honoring and lifting high another as higher than yourself out of a heart of love in response to God’s word, act, or nature.
Sacrifice – Giving up completely something that is greatly important to you for the benefit of another because you love them.
Here, I am talking specifically of the worshiping God, but we worship and lift high so many things that are undeserving. Food, sleep, money, fashion, entertainment, sports, people, can all be worshiped in spite of not being worth it. In this one statement, you may be feeling judged and your toes may feel stepped on, but this is the reality of the matter in my life as well as the lives of so many others.
We have a struggle in the morning when our alarms go off whether we will rise and spend time with the Lord worshiping Him or worship the god of sleep that is so seductive especially when it comes time to make the decision. I could go on and on about each one of these, but every time we choose these things over obedience to God and love for Him, we are worshiping them and lifting them high as the important things in our lives.
In 2 Chronicles 21, we come to learn that we worship God when we accept His word and are obedient without doubting or questioning what He says. Jehosophat had no direct command of God to put His worshipers on the front lines. They did it out of an act of obedience and thus worshiped God by being obedient and trusting in the word of God.
In Genesis 22, Abraham is called to sacrifice his son that God had just revealed was the son of promise. Abraham trusted God in such a way that as they went to the mountain in Vs. 5 Abraham says we go to worship. Abraham’s heart of sacrifice is a true act of worship to God. He was willing to give whatever God asked in obedience out of his great love for Him.
In John 4,
What Jesus mean to worship God in Spirit and truth?
- God wants a constant communion with you in the day to day. He does not want you to worship Him in a church or at your house only, but in the Spirit everywhere you go in every situation that you are in.
- God wants you to be honest with Him. You cannot fool God. He sees the thoughts and intentions of your heart. If you are giving Him something small and seemingly mediocre out of a good heart, it is greater worship than giving the very most you have out of a wrong heart. (1 Cor 13:3)
In Malachi 1, God desires our very best. If we bring God half-hearted worship out of duty, these things are not pure and holy and actually dishonor and disrespect God. He would rather no one worship than to have duty-filled worship out of grudging hearts. He wants pure and holy worship that is a true witness to who He is. This only comes when we are giving God our best out of a willing and loving heart.
In 2 Samuel 24, David reveals that God is blessed by our sacrifice more than he is blessed by our excess. We see this concept over and over throughout the Bible that when we give God something valuable to us, that is true worship. Those giving because they have extra does not impress God. Jesus states this in a different way when talking of the widow in Mark 12:41-44. God desires our pure and holy sacrifice so He can bless us with better than our very best!!!
Finally, in Luke 7, a “sinner” probably a prostitute comes in to the middle of the pastors and elders of their day. She humbles herself completely to the judgmental and critical thoughts and stares and worships Jesus. This “sinner” sacrificed more and gave more in worship than anyone else around. Because of her sacrifice and true heart of worship, her sins are forgiven, and she is saved. She was forgiven much and so loved much. The fact that she loved much caused her to sacrifice her most valuable possession and her pride as an act of worship to Jesus.
Does you love cause you to sacrifice your pride and valuables in worship to the Lord?
Nothing I have spoken is out of judgment or condemnation, but Holy Spirit has even convicted me in studying these things. Our love for God will always lead us to a true worship which is displayed in what we are willing to sacrifice for our True Love.
Ask Holy Spirit these questions and be obedient in what He is speaking:
Are you giving your very best to God? This is true worship.
What is God calling you to sacrifice to love Him and worship Him in a deeper way?
May you be blessed with knowing more of the Love of God than ever before, and may you receive the fullness of the blessing that comes through true worship and sacrifice.
Jeremiah, Man on Fire!!!
The Lord has brought Jeremiah and I on a long journey this past year and a half since we got married. A journey that has forever marked us and set us on a path of no return, a wild and crazy adventure to be discovered. This odyssey brought along with it extreme stretching and growth, an increase in reliance on God, joy, tears, adventure, fun, excitement, hardships, and more than can be expressed in words on paper (or in a blog.) Because of our diligence and obedience, our loving and faithful Father has rewarded us on so many levels and has entrusted us to new and bigger things; the greatest of which is new life. Yes, that’s right, He has made us parents of the most wonderful blessing.
Our little gift growing in my womb is the fulfillment of a promise God spoke to me while we were on our 9 month-long faith journey around the world. You see, before Jeremiah and I were married, I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, or PCOS. This means that small cysts form on the ovaries leading to hormonal imbalance. Often insulin resistance leading to diabetes is a result of that. PCOS is incurable and over time can affect a woman’s fertility greatly along with many other life altering consequences including developing uterine cancer, heart disease, atherosclerosis, stroke, etc. Being a woman who is called by God to be a mother, I could have let this greatly discourage me and affect the way I dealt with things, especially since this was the second chronic diagnosis I had received in my life. Instead of settling for what had been spoken over me, I refused and believed the Lord for my healing. Psalm 91:1-3 states, “Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the Lord: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; He is my God, and I trust Him. For He will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease.”
I felt that I was supposed to continue taking the medicine the doctor gave me when we left the U.S. I clearly heard the Lord speak to me while we were traveling that I was healed so I would petition Him to stop taking the meds, however each time He told me to continue taking them. At one point, He even told me that He gave me 7 months of the meds purposely and to finish them out, revealing to me that 7 is the number of completion and perfection. From then on, I waited on Him and held that word. We were in India the end of March when I took my last pill and had felt God leading me to pray and fast for myself, believing for my healing. That this would be when I would see my body work properly. During this special time with Him, He revealed to me the gender of our child and the name very clearly, confirming it many times.
I claimed that promise and kept it close to my heart, awaiting the day that it would come to fruition, for one of my deepest desires was to be a mother. I thought it would come quicker than it did, and I would become somewhat discouraged when it didn’t. I am so thankful for my Husband, for he encouraged me every time that God was revealing to me that I really was healed as I saw my body worked perfectly. God only made me wait 3 months to bring His promise about, and interestingly enough, a total of 10 months…perfection of divine order.
I found out I was pregnant when I got back from England in July and we have been more than blessed to see fruit coming forth from God’s promise. And boy, was it a joyful day having my 19 week sonogram revealing that just as He said about 8 months ago, we would be having a sweet baby boy, baby Azariah!!! 🙂 We are overflowing with joy for all that Daddy has in store for our little miracle, for He has already used our child to minister to many people from the womb. This adventure He has us on has only gotten more exciting and adventurous! “For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.” Isaiah 43:19
Katie, Pure Fire of Yahweh!!!