God always gives his best. Maybe that’s why he asks us to give our best.
Look at the Old Testament. Whenever God asked for a lamb, what kind was it? Unblemished. He didn’t want the spotted crippled leftover lambs. He wanted the purest and best. Because that unblemished lamb represented the gift he gave us of his son. When people brought fruit as an offering what kind was it? First fruits. Not the leftover black bananas at the bottom of the bowl. Not the crumpled up wilted lettuce or the shriveled up apples. He wanted the first and best. He demands that today.
We tend to bring our castoffs to Christ. “Hey pastor, I’ve got an old couch I’m throwing away, could you use it down at the church?” Translation, “Not good enough for my house, but good enough for God.”
We get sucked into this. One year our church wanted to put up a Christmas tree. I stood up to make the request. “Anybody got an old Christmas tree you need to get rid of?” Man, the holy spirit flew all over me. “What kind of request is that?” I changed it, “Who wants to go out and buy the best tree they can find and bring it to the Lord?”
God asks for OUR best because that’s what he gives to us.
He reminded me of this a year ago. We had a Ukranian girl named Sveta at our church. She came here for an education so she could return and help with adoptions and work with our mission team.
Sveta needed a car. So we prayed for a car for Sveta.
One day someone called the church and said, “I just liquidated a car dealership in another state and I have a new 2004 car that’s left over. I’d like to give it to the church.” God led him to give us a car. I don’t think he even knew about the need.
Warren came to me and said, “we have this car what do we do with it?” We started trying to figure out what to do with a brand new car. Do we sell it and apply the money to one of the many needs around here. Then we remembered, “Wait a minute, we’ve been praying for a car for Sveta.”
“Yeah, but not a brand new one!”
Why are we always surprised when God gives a new car?
God always gives his best.
(James 1: 16) Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.
God always gives his best. So we need to give our best.