Sacrifice-the act of giving something up for the good of someone else. What is given up usually costs the giver…up to their life. There are not enough words to write all of the stories of people who have sacrificed for the betterment of their fellow mankind. Millions have died in battle saving their fellow soldier, a city full of women and children, or their country. People sacrifice their time, treasure, and talent to accomplish great things for the betterment of their fellow mankind. With the thousands upon millions of stories of sacrifice that we find on the printed page, it still is difficult for many to sacrifice any of these things.
We are raising a Leader Dog Puppy for the Blind. When she is about a year we turn her in and she receives more training and will hopefully do well enough to be a guide dog for a blind person. I am amazed by all of the comments I receive from people when I take her out and work with her in public. So many say, “I could never give them back.” It is a very difficult thing to turn them in since we have done it once all ready, but the person we will help is definitely worth the sacrifice.
We find the ultimate sacrifice in Scripture when Christ willingly submitted to the torture and pain of death on a Roman cross for my sins. “Have the same mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus…but emptied Himself, by taking on the form of a servant…He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” (Philippians 2:5-8). He willingly sacrificed His life to pay the penalty for my sins, yet so many times I do not appreciate His sacrifice for me. So many times I elevate my needs above another. I am selfish and want my way. I live in fear of the “what ifs.” I think I deserve to be happy at the expense of another person’s happiness. I do not appreciate what others have done for me.
Sacrifice in a relationship with anyone whether a spouse, a child, a friend, etc. is much sweeter when both willingly sacrifice for each other and appreciate the sacrifice that is made. If we all lived with the mind of Christ as we are challenged to do in Philippians, there would be less divorce, less angry words spoken, less tears of hurt, less children abandoned, less violence, and less fear. “I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” (Romans 12:1). When we willingly sacrifice, we are worshipping God. Let’s worship God together by willingly sacrificing for our Lord, and in the process those around us will receive a blessing too.