Rejoice, God has given us His Best

Preacher : Elder Edward Kariuki Ikegu
Message : Rejoice, God has given us His Best
Readings : 1 Peter 3-9, Malachi 1:6-8

As we rejoice because Christ has risen, let us ask ourselves, is God happy with us

 An illustration of a boy and his sister who were playing Noah and the ark using a bathtub as the flood. After the “rains” stop, the boy suggested that they give God a sacrifice. He proposed that his sister gives one of her toys as the sacrifice but she refused and instead asked the brother to give one of his toys. When both couldn’t agree on the sacrifice, the sister suggested that they get an old broken toy and give it as a sacrifice and that’s what they did. They gave God their worst.
 Let us reflect on that story and what God did. Unlike the siblings, God gave us his best, his only begotten son – Jesus Christ as we read in John 3:16.
Jesus has risen and we have hope and the place he is preparing for us is so beautiful.
John in the book of Revelation describes how beautiful heaven is yet Jesus left all that and came and suffered so that we may be saved.
There is no other argument it is true and we know it that Jesus is alive for our sake.
As Jesus left the world, he left his disciples with the great commission to preach the word of God. The disciples are not here. We are the ones called to preach the word of God.
God gave us his best and we ought to give him our best.
There are four ways in which we may serve God and give him our best.
1. Time.  Let us give God our time when we are very fresh in the morning. If you purpose to read the Bible or pray in the evening, you will be too tired to be effective but when you do not in the mornings, you will be effective
2. Intellect. Giving your knowledge, experience and expertise in serving God in the various committees and areas that exist in the ministry of God
3. Our lives. By getting fully committed to God and allowing the Holy Spirit to work in us and transform us to be like Christ. Remember this journey will end when we meet with God as Paul teaches us. Let us surrender our hearts fully to God and stop sinning. Let’s love God fully
4. Our resources. Giving back to God what he has given unto us. We are challanged to give cheerfully to God not to be seen by men but by God. Just like Jesus sat in the temple observing how people were giving, the same way he observes us today to see our attitude of giving. It is good to be obedient to the voice of God in giving just like the lady in the old testament who gave her last portion of flour and oil to Elijah and God blessed her with more and more.
 
There are enough examples of people who gave and were blessed.
The case of Abraham who had accepted to sacrifice his only son Isaac and God gave him back his son
 Let us give to God what is his including out tithes.
Abel gave the best sacrifice as compared to Cain. Let us give the best to God.
 It’s not how much you give but the attitude you have towards giving.
 God’s balance sheet will not change whether we give or not because all riches belong to God. It is us who will be blessed by our giving to God.
 In the second reading, Malachi 1, God tells the Israelite that he loves them. Even us we have seen the love of God in our lives.
God was complaining in Malachi that though he had loved them and given them the best, yet they were not giving him their best.
 God challenged the Isrealites whether they would give the Governor an unworthy gift like sick and lame animals and whether he would accept them. The answer was no. Even us today if we were to give our dignitaries gifts, would we give the sick and lame gifts.
Our second best does not honour God.
 As we know God is our father and that he gave his son Jesus Christ to die for us, we should not therefore withhold our best from God.
Florence Nightingale was born………
Florence Nightingale was born in 1820 in a very rich family. She is the mother of modern day nursing.  Her father hoped she would get married and live a good life. But Florence choose not to get married and opted to do nursing which was considered a lowly job
 Florence wrote in her diary at the age of 30 years that she was now a mature person and at the age when Jesus started his ministry and thus it was time to change.
 Florence changed the way people viewed nursing from a lowly job to a dignified profession.
At one point when Britain was at war and the death rate was high due to sickness in the military camp, Florence was able to come up with procedures for cleanliness and diet that reduced the death rate by two thirds. She was at the military camp at that time.
 When Florence came back from the war, the British Government gave her 250,000 Sterling pounds which even in today’s terms is still a very large amount of money.  Her contribution was quite great and influenced the way nursing was viewed.
When she died, the state of England wanted to give her a state burial but she had said she wanted a simple burial.  Even on her deathbed, countries like Germany and France would still consult her due to her immense contribution. She was bedridden for a long time as she had suffered sickness at an early age. When asked what was her secret, Florence responded that it was due to the fact of giving her best in her service.
 Florence did not withhold her abilities and gave God all to her best.
 Let us give God our best since as a Christian you will not have served God until you give him your best.

1 Peter 3:9

Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult. On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.

Malachi 1:6-8

Breaking Covenant Through Blemished Sacrifices

“A son honors his father, and a slave his master. If I am a father, where is the honor due me? If I am a master, where is the respect due me?” says the Lord Almighty.

“It is you priests who show contempt for my name.

“But you ask, ‘How have we shown contempt for your name?’

“By offering defiled food on my altar.

“But you ask, ‘How have we defiled you?’

“By saying that the Lord’s table is contemptible. When you offer blind animals for sacrifice, is that not wrong? When you sacrifice lame or diseased animals, is that not wrong? Try offering them to your governor! Would he be pleased with you? Would he accept you?” says the Lord Almighty.

Credits to: Elder Wamagata (Writer) and Kamoche (Publisher)

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