Read: Proverbs 21
Key Verses: Proverbs 21:3. “The Lord is more pleased when we do what is right and just than when we offer him sacrifices.”
Devotional: People are a lot like water, we always gravitate towards the path of least resistance. As I’ve studied this topic I’ve discovered a slight variation to the statement, “the path of least resistance”. It could also be stated as, “the path of least energy”. This is the statement that seems fit our lives better. More often than not we tend to take the path of least energy.
Personally I tend to take the path of least energy when it comes to exercise. I could jump on the elliptical and crank out 45 minutes or so but sometimes I choose to take the path of least energy and just do 15 minutes. Of course I still meander around the weight room for another 20 minutes or so pretending to do stretches so I don’t have to pass by the front desk 15 minutes after I walked in. I tend to take the path of least energy when it comes to cutting my lawn. I could edge the sidewalk and be sure to blow every stray piece of loose grass from the driveway, but sometimes I don’t. Sometimes I just give it the quickest cut I can so I can go back in the house and resume my couch patrol.
So you don’t think I’m a complete slacker, there are times when I put in the work at the gym and commit to a solid workout and there are times that I go out and really give the lawn a thorough cutting, edging, weed whacking and blowing. My point though is that left to our own devices and without any real accountability we often choose the path of least energy. Why? It’s just easier. It takes less work. It’s quicker. It doesn’t come with the same level of commitment. I could go on and on but I think you get the point.
Proverbs 21:3 paints for us a clear and practical picture of what the Lord is looking for from those who choose to follow Him. He’s more interested in how we live our lives than us offering him a trite sacrifice that doesn’t really cost us anything. It’s no different than me showing up at the gym and putting in a whopping 15 minutes on the elliptical, it really doesn’t mean anything. I haven’t sacrificed anything of significance. What I should be doing is living my life in a healthy way day in and day out. In fact my whopping 15 minutes means even less when I haven’t been living the healthy life the other 1425 minutes of that day.
If we’re honest with ourselves we’ll admit that sometimes we offer God the meaningless sacrifice instead of offering the whole enchilada. We’ll throw a few bucks in the offering plate, we’ll voice a half hearted prayer before we scarf down our lunch, we’ll do the proverbial “help a few old ladies across the street” but what God really wants from us is a commitment to live our lives in a way that could be described as right and just. Righteousness and justice should exude from us in our work life, our home life, our thought life, our parenting, our marriage, in any and all areas of your life righteousness and justice should reign supreme.
Take Action: Make a list of those areas of your life where you may be taking the path of least energy. What does taking the path of least energy look like in your work life, home life, marriage, parenting? What would it look like for your to offer the “whole enchilada” to God instead of meaningless sacrifices?
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