“But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from You, and we have given You only what comes from Your hand”—1 Chronicles 29:14 (NIV).
My hairdresser and I were recently discussing her experiences cutting hair at local nursing and assisted living facilities. Two days each week Rachel gives her time to make the elderly residents feel better after getting a haircut. The recipients are grateful, and Rachel enjoys being able to give of her time and talent to others.
Our conversation led to my sharing stories of my grandchildren and me baking cookies and delivering them to some of the same local facilities for the elderly. My two oldest grandchildren, now teenagers, were only two and three-years-old when we started sharing baked goods with them. At the time, the facilities would allow us to walk down the halls and in the common areas to distribute the goodies. To assure my grandchildren would part with the cookies, I reminded them they had leftovers at home to eat.
Several years later, we included their cousin, who was around two at the time, in our monthly baking and sharing lesson. Driving to the first nursing home, all three children were in the backseat. Each held a bag containing cookies. I chuckled when my oldest grandchild told Cash he couldn’t eat the cookies intended for the elderly. Instead, she told him there were leftover cookies at home. As the three handed out the cookies, I overheard my youngest grandson telling each of the recipients, “We get to eat the leftovers.” That was 10 years ago, but we still laugh when I share that story.
Don’t Give God Your Leftovers
I’m positive our Heavenly Father is disappointed with His children when we give Him our leftovers. How often do we give Him our leftover time and money? What about half-hearted praise? A “ho-hum” commitment. A last-minute effort.
Malachi, the last of the Old Testament prophets, delivers messages as reminders to the Israelites who had returned from exile, rebuilt the Temple, and reestablished worship. However, they had become complacent again in their faith, the very things leading to their exile in the first place.
The Lord had been good to the Israelites, but their complacency had led to unworthy sacrifices and God was not pleased. In Malachi 1:14, he warns them. “Cursed is the cheat who promises to give a fine ram from his flock but then sacrifices a defective one to the Lord.”
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SOURCE: Assist News Service