Can we sacrifice God-given gifts for the gospel?

Sometimes we believe that we can’t give something up because we think it’s such a part of us, something that God’s so clearly given us. It could be some gift, that gives us such life and energy, or it could be a ministry that is such a clear blessing to others.

It seems wrong to forsake or squash these good things because we can’t see how God will take these gifts and re-use them in unimaginable ways. All we see in front of us is death. The promise of resurrection can seem so far off and impossible.

One of the hardest things for me in heading overseas was to give up a wonderful opportunity to pursue a potential music career with a really good friend. The music was good. It gave life and energy to me and others. The words brought deep and important truths to many listeners. And I felt like I was alive every time we played.

Giving it up felt like I was killing a God given part of myself, and of my friend too!

But when I got to the new land, I found that the task of language learning would be just as exciting and engaging. It made me come alive and energize me in the same way. And conversations felt like jam sessions with master musicians. I began to love the music of the language that would roll out of my mouth in endless conversations with people who had never before heard the good news. The gift squandered became something used anew.

Abraham went to sacrifice Isaac, the very son that God so clearly promised him. Isaac was supposed to be the conduit for all the fruitfulness and everything he knew to be true about God’s promises.

But he still went and sacrificed him. Even though he didn’t understand and it seemed so wrong.

To follow God’s call to take the gospel to the nations, his people will have to make brutal, painful, sometimes seemingly senseless and counter-productive sacrifices. But when we look with faith, we will see him come through on his good promises.

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