What do we have to offer? Nothing at all of our own. But once we are saved, we are called to works and that is our offering. Along with all our issues and problems and concerns of course.
The pastor’s sermon this Sunday was on James 19ff. He pointed out that we are expected to work, to follow through on this gift from God by responding and obeying and working. What works do we do? We are good listeners, quick to hear. Every spent time with someone who just listened to you? They weren’t trying to finish your sentences, or explain how the exact same thing happened to the but worse, or looking around at the other people they could be talking to. They just focused on you and listened to you.
Getting cancer produces more moments like this, but I would recommend becoming a good listener to people in their every day lives, don’t wait until they have cancer. 🙂
We control our tempers. This is one I need to work on at work. (Or maybe I don’t go back to that job and it becomes a non-issue. Hope prevails!) But Christians should have their temper under control. And even at my worst, I wasn’t a candidate for anger management classes. But what kind of witness is it to lose control and flip out over some small thing? Don’t do it. Control that tempter. It is a skill that can be learned. Learn it!
Put away wickedness and be filled with meekness. Christians are humble and seek to be holy. We know we won’t be perfect and Jesus forgives all our sins when we repent, but we are to try to be holy. We are to make an effort to not sin, to resist.
And be doers of the word. Again, do what it says. Don’t just read it and meditate on it and say what good it is. Do it. Be someone who sees and cares about others. Have you met people who don’t seem to actually “see” other people? Their problems or concerns don’t ever seem to register with that person? It’s a weird thing to someone who is sensitive to others. Although most of us probably go through periods where we are like that.
I’m finding that right now while I’m the one most people are praying for, I can get people to reveal what they need prayer for so I can return the favor and pray for them. Or help them even. I have learned what a privilege it is to raise someone up to Heaven in prayer. Don’t think your issue is too small, heavens, it isn’t cancer at least. Know that if it is big to you, then that is all that matters. Ask for prayer!
Visit orphans and widows. Take care of those less fortunate and in need. Physically care for them, don’t just bless them and move on. Actually meet their needs with food, facilities, money, etc. Think about the good Samaritan. He didn’t leave the guy in the ditch. He took him to an inn, paid for his care, etc. He physically met the man in his need!
That’s what I have to say about offering. We offer our good deeds to God in gratitude for what He has done for us. We don’t just sit back and wait for death or the Second Coming.
I know a person who is very lazy and isn’t taking care of daily business, much less the additional things listed above. And in thinking about the sermon and other things I’m reading, I’m worried about the state of his salvation. Now, I do believe someone can be lazy and saved at the same time, but the salvation should start to bring out some change, and if you have to wait too long for the change, perhaps the salvation isn’t there.
So I pray for this person, that they will be awakened to the gift given them by God and spurred to action.