Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Love Gives Up Stuff

Matthew 9:14 One day the disciples of John the Baptist came to Jesus and asked him, “Why don’t your disciples fast like we do and the Pharisees do?”

As a child, I was taught to give, but like most children I enjoyed getting more than giving. Parents, teachers and grandparents had to encourage me to share and sacrifice-to be selfless. After all, Christmas and birthdays were about me-or so I thought. Jesus encountered religious elite who liked to show off. So in addition to giving up food, they added uncombed hair, unwashed faces and somber looks. Others noticed and admired them, but that’s all the reward they received. Their motives were tarnished. Fasting involves giving up more than food. Such as internet, television, electronic games, cell phones and hobbies. We choose to sacrifice something temporarily so we can focus intensely on God and hear his directions more clearly.

God will always reward our gift of giving up.