Giving the Wrong Gift
For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings. Hosea 6:6
Don't you hate it when you give a gift to someone and then realize that it is not something they want? Although they smile, you can tell it is fake. And of course, there is the opposite situation when you open the present and wonder, "What were they thinking?" You try to hide your disappointment but fear they can see it in your eyes.
Can I Give a Gift to God?
I think we often picture God like this. We think that God could not possibly like any gift we give Him. We believe that because God needs nothing, therefore He wants nothing. I believe this is a terrible mistake. It weakens your relationship with a God that truly desires for you to know Him.
The mistake is in equating need with want. It is true that God is totally complete in Himself. He has no needs. But God clearly indicates that there are some things that He desires.
What Does God Want?
At the beginning of this post you read Hosea 6:6 where God tells us he desires steadfast love and for us to know Him. In John 4:23 Jesus tells the woman at the well that the Father seeks those who will worship in spirit and in truth.
Notice that in the Hosea passage God tells us He is not looking for sacrifice as much as for you. Don't make the mistake of thinking that what God wants most is for you to make some great sacrifice for Him. Yes, it is true God sometimes asks us to sacrifice. But that sacrifice should come out of our steadfast love and knowledge of Him. God first and primary desire is for us to know Him and love Him.
A Gift List for God
Do you want to bring a gift to God that He will enjoy? Then consider these gifts:
- Sincere and heartfelt worship. God is seeking for people who will worship Him in spirit and truth.
- Steadfast love. God is a God of love and His desire is for you to respond to His love by loving Him and those around you.
- Seek to know God. Make a sincere effort to get to know God better. Not just learn about Him, but spend time in His presence listening, praying, studying, resting ... Commune with God.
- Yourself. This has become cliche. You have heard it before, "All God want is you." But the truth is that God does seek for an intimate and life changing relationship with you. One where He can demonstrate His love in your life.
There, now you have a gift list for God. See if you can give Him something He will truly enjoy this coming year.
Question: What other gifts can we give to God? Please leave a comment.
by Jerry Wyrick, President of Worship Arts Conservatory