Thursday, September 18, 2014

Sacrifice

According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary

sac·ri·fice  noun \ˈsa-krə-ˌfīs, also -fəs or -ˌfīz\
: the act of giving up something that you want to keep especially in order to get or do something else or to help someone

When I consider that God asks for us to give up certain things in our lives for him, I often wonder about my sacrifice. Is it really a sacrifice? 

I found this on Pinterest and I wanted to give credit but couldn't figure out
how to make the picture show up here so i am including the link below.
http://www.pinterest.com/pin/109845678387010465/ 

Our family has given up many things that typical American families enjoy.

  • Cable TV (70% of all American households have cable tv subscription)
  • Our second car (Average American household owns 2.28 cars). Matt rides his bike which saves us on gas and insurance. We will probably get a second vehicle when our kids come home.
  • We generally only eat out once a month (usually Chick-fil-a). Average American household eats out 1-3 times per week.
  • For birthdays, we are celebrating as a family and having a friend over for a meal. We will have parties for milestone birthdays and keep party costs to under $50.
  • For Christmas, One gift of clothes, one book and one game to play as a family. One year we even did new batteries in all of the old toys- my kids still talk about that Christmas and how neat it was.
  • Tithe- we give 10% of our income back
I am not pointing these things out to make us seem so great or to tell you we think you should make them too...

Once our family adjusted to the new changes in our lifestyle, it was just a way of life. We weren't really sacrificing anymore....

This is where I am wondering, where I need your comments, I want your feedback...
Are any of the things listed above really a sacrifice after we have adjusted to our new way of life? When we are comfortable with where we are, is there another step to take in our sacrifices?

NONE of these things "earn" us a way to heaven, because that is only through Jesus' sacrifice on the cross and we know that. But is there a call to be sacrificial with our lifestyle to pour blessings out on other people through the blessings God has given us? All of our family's sacrifices have ultimately saved us money. When the discomfort is gone, do we have a duty to find a new way to sacrifice? 

Money is not the only sacrifice that can be made. Time is another huge sacrifice. 

What are some ways that you sacrifice time as a family to God? This is a place we can (and want to) improve. 

Are there other sacrifices that you are making along with your family? What are they? 

We love to share ideas with others. Hearing your family's testimony may have an impact on my family or someone else's family who may read this.








2 comments:

Carter Johnson said...

I don't have any profound advice to give. I've been wondering about the same thing, so I could use other people's advice a lot. It seems to me that we ought to give up so much more than we do, for the sake of people who have a lot less than we do. I know the Bolins are doing that! And it's important to give up things for God that won't directly benefit other humans. I think the Bolins are doing that, too! One thing I sometimes do is give up a sense pleasure, like a food I like. We can be tempted to think that controlling your desire for pleasure is easy if you control the desire for one kind of pleasure. I think it can become easy to deny yourself one kind of pleasure and then have a hard time giving up a different kind, and for me the pleasures of good food were hard to give up. I love desserts, so eating them less was one way I tried to sacrifice. I think this also helps build up general willpower. At the same time, I hesitate to recommend this, because I'd feel bad if your kiddos didn't get desserts. Haha!

Ash said...

ha! I missed seeing this comment until today Carter! I am so thankful that you took the time to respond. I think dessert is a great place to start. And I think maybe each month we could focus on a different aspect of life...food, entertainment, comfort, etc. Give up one of those things for the entire month and see what comes of it...I think more importantly I think is what we do with the time we would have spent doing that thing we give up. I know I need more time devoted to focusing on and praising and praying to my Father in Heaven. I put entirely too much focus on many other things in my life and need to put more focus on him.