Parts of this story from my childhood will likely be a shared experience for many of you: my grandfather always wanted to give us something when we came to visit him. We would usually get a quarter, it meant a little more back then, and a firm pat on the head. I remember one time my father and an uncle visited at the same time; with five grandchildren at one time this put the quarter payout in jeopardy. As far as I was concerned the US Mint for quarters was in my grandfather’s pocket so I wasn’t worried. Things started as usual; my grandfather put his hand into that left trouser pocket and pulled out… pocket fuzz.
This could have been the shattering of my pixie sticks dreams (There was an old country store right across the street) but grandfather wasn’t going to stand for that. A house-wide search ensued and we each received our quarter.
So why was the giving of that quarter so important to my grandfather? He wanted to show us that we each had value to him. That became evident to me on this particular day because he could have said “Sorry children, your grandfather doesn’t have your quarter today” and we would have moved on to other things like searching for the stash of peanuts always available in the house. The consistent giving of that quarter, with varying degrees of effort, proved he cared about us.
Consistent Love for God
We face the same type of choices every day with our relationship with God. Some days it is not so difficult to sing the praises of God, we pray, we do our devotions and we happily pay honor to our Heavenly Father. Then there are those days when all you pull out is pocket fuzz. (When I came home this evening I was tired, it had been a long day and I made the mistake of sitting down for a minute. The moment I sit down I remembered I had promised myself this morning that I would post something to the blog this evening. I want to be an example of everything I say in print so I got right back up and this post is the result.)
Consistent Labor for God
At our places of employment we know that each work day does not necessarily equal the same amount of accomplishment. However, showing up each day is proof to our employers that we do care about our job and will put forth the same effort. (I hope we all think this way)
In our spiritual walk with the Lord no two days are the same either so how do we prove to God we care? We prove our commitment to God by being consistent in our effort. Have you ever had one of those days when your bible study is going nowhere? It is during these times the evil one will tempt us and say… “Just stop, you are not getting anything out of it tonight, you can read extra tomorrow.” If we stop it will be easier to stop the next time.
King David’s Priceless Quote
The event we are going to look at is recorded in 2 Samuel 24 & 1 Chr 21. I will mostly use the events as recorded in 2 Samuel.
Actually the events leading up to David’s priceless quote was the result of sin. David, against God’s will, had commanded that the people of Israel be numbered. His general, Joab, knew this meant trouble and tried to talk David out of it but the king had spoken and the deed was done.
In verse 10 we are told that David comes to grips with his moment of pride and is filled with guilt. (Isn’t this the way it always works; Satan talks us into something and as soon as we give in we feel immediately guilty for it.)
God told David to rear up an altar where he was at the time. David went right to the owner of the threshing floor and said he wanted to buy the property and erect an altar to God. The owner told him you can have the land and I’ll even supply the animals for the offering. Now for that priceless quote I promised you… “And the king said unto Araunah, Nay; but I will surely buy it of thee at a price: neither will I offer burnt offerings unto the LORD my God of that which doth cost me nothing.” 2 Sam 24:24a
David had undervalued his relationship with God and it led him down the wrong path. He realized where he had gone wrong and would not accept the easy way out again. David had made a decision to no longer try to offer to God that which would cost him nothing.
We are going to dig into our pocket some days, spiritually speaking, and pull out pocket fuzz. When we do are we going to try to offer God that which costs us nothing?