A Living Sacrifice
I usually think about this text after a long, busy weekend full of ministry activities. When I arrive home tired beyond words, I remind myself that I am to present my body as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable unto God, as the King James version tells me. This text applies to the ministers and the congregants. Early one morning as I was driving to a ministry event, I was fighting for my brain to function properly. I am not a morning person and usually, I do not get enough rest. My cup of activities runneth over. That's a story for another day. As I drove and listened to a song about bringing a sacrifice of praise, I began to think about this text and us presenting our bodies as a living sacrifice.
Usually, I think about this text in terms of what we do for God and for kingdom building. But, on that morning, I thought about the ritual of sacrifice that the priests performed prior to Jesus' crucifixion. The priests had to sacrifice animals that contained no spot or blemish or defect. Perfect animals. I began to wonder what God's reaction would be if today, we were to present our actual bodies to the altar of sacrifice. Would God consider our sacrifice holy? Would God be pleased with the physical condition of our bodies?
Oftentimes, future events cause us to want to get in shape so that we can look good at the event. Brides join a gym or hire a personal trainer so that they can look fantastic on their wedding day. Some people begin exercising when the class reunion is around the corner. They want to show those folks from high school or college or graduate school that they have it all together. What happens after the wedding and the class reunion? Most of us go back to business as usual of eating the wrong foods and leading a sedentary lifestyle. Why are we not as motivated to look good for God? The King James version declares that this is our reasonable service. The New International version, however, struck me. It says that this is our true and proper worship. How are we worshiping God? Is our worship true? Is our worship proper? Be blessed. Remain encouraged.