Obedience vs Sacrifice
Proverbs 21:3 (TLB) God is more pleased when we are just and fair than when we give him gifts.
Have you ever known someone who was consistently in the wrong but would try to make up for their mistakes through gifts? I think of the scenario we see played out with a father who is always working late hours and the children really want his presence and to play with their dad but because he is gone all the time, he buys them great gifts or expensive toys as a way to make up for the lost time. However, obedience is far better than sacrifice. No amount of gifts can replace time spent with someone you love.
Another example is an employee who keeps showing up late or making consistent errors in their job, they cannot buys donuts for the office and think it will wipe away all of their bad habits. The "sacrifice" of spending a few dollars is not correcting their disobedience. God wants our obedience more than our sacrifice. Following His will for our lives is much better than disobeying God and sending in large offerings.
Being right with God is priceless - knowing that you will be with Jesus when you die cannot be replaced with anything else. God wants us to be obedient and when we do make sacrifices, we are rewarded. I have seen many people who feel guilty for not living their lives the way God has called them to so they with do some form of good works in an attempt to get right with God. We cannot do enough good to be right with God, we are saved by grace and out of our salvation and gratefulness for what God has already done for us through the sacrifice on the cross, we will desire to help others and be a blessing to those in need. Let's continue to walk in obedience and serve God with all of our heart, soul and mind.
1 Samuel 15:22 (TLB) Samuel replied, “Has the Lord as much pleasure in your burnt offerings and sacrifices as in your obedience? Obedience is far better than sacrifice. He is much more interested in your listening to him than in your offering the fat of rams to him. Ephesians 2:8-9 (TPT) For it was only through this wonderful grace that we believed in him. Nothing we did could ever earn this salvation, for it was the gracious gift from God that brought us to Christ! So no one will ever be able to boast, for salvation is never a reward for good works or human striving.