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Have you ever made a dumb financial decision? You know, one that you wish you could so badly take back? I have many times.

I vividly remember saving up my birthday and Christmas money to buy the newest and coolest jeans with bedazzled pockets. There was something so satisfying about buying a brand-new pair of jeans to show off at middle school. The nice compliments and second glances only satisfied me for so long…until the comments faded away and the urge to buy another pair came back again.

The thing with sacrificing your money for something materialistic is that the good feeling of having something new satisfies only temporarily.

What about the sacrifices we make for God?

I write this devotional as a recovering people pleaser, performer, and perfectionist. Hear me say, I am no expert in always having a right heart posture towards the Lord. But the Lord has been kind to deepen my view of what it means to offer sacrifices of praise to Him.

Hebrews 13 is about living a life of holiness, marked by obedience to God, and shown through sacrificially loving others. Living this kind of life is not easy, and it doesn’t happen from our own strength. Some may read Hebrews 13 and think it is a checklist to follow to live a life pleasing to God. I admit that I am guilty of thinking this at times.

What if I told you the Christian life is less about checking off boxes and more about falling deeper in love with our Savior day by day?

Last year, I participated in a ten-month long Bible training program at a local church. I came into the program wrestling and believing my identity to be found in doing things for God rather than just being His daughter. I’d been serving in ministry for a few years. It felt like whiplash when all my ministry responsibilities were stripped away and my only “job” for ten months was to learn about God and sit in His presence.

God used those ten months to expose my sin and remind me how much I need a Savior. None of the good works for Him I had been doing were pointing back to the heart of the Lord. I was left feeling empty and lost. In the midst of being refined, God met me with His grace. He used Psalm 51 to remind me that my past, present, and future sins have been washed away by the blood of Christ. Specifically, verses 15-17 remind me of our response to God cleansing us from sin.

“O Lord, give me the words.
Then my mouth will praise you.
Certainly you do not want a sacrifice, or else I would offer it;
you do not desire a burnt sacrifice.
The sacrifices God desires is a humble spirit –
O God, a humble and repentant heart you will not reject.”

Psalm 51:15-17

In reality, the only thing we have to offer to God is our humble spirit.

We have to fully depend on Him as our Father. We cannot accomplish anything on our own. No performance or perfection will ever satisfy. No checklist will ever fill our empty cup. Jesus is the living water we are looking for.

Realizing we have nothing to offer except a pure heart before the Lord frees us up to love others. We have been shown an immense amount of grace from our Heavenly Father, and now we get to show that grace to others.

Let us never grow tired of hearing the good news of the gospel. Jesus is our perfect sacrifice. Jesus is the only thing that will ever satisfy us. And living a life fully surrendered to Him is worth living.

As you think about the sacrifices you’re making this week, consider where your heart is at before the Lord. He delights in working in and through you. Allow Him to be the motivation of how you serve Him and love others.

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Jayci Williams

Jayci Williams

Jayci was born and raised in Southeast Missouri, but now finds herself in Dallas, Texas working for Watermark Community Church. She has a deep desire to know God’s Word and share His truth with others. In her free time, you can find Jayci lounging at a coffee shop, cooking a meal for a friend, or watching the newest movie.

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