We live in a world where we are taught to focus on ourselves. Everywhere we look, we see things telling us to get ahead at all costs. We buy all kinds of products and put all kinds of time and effort into trying to fulfill a vision of success defined by culture.
There aren’t as many conversations about sacrifice. The word carries negative connotations with it because the culture instills in us to try to get as much as we can. But sacrifice brings good things to our life.
When asked what the greatest commandment in all the Scriptures was, Jesus expressed the irreplaceable position of love. We find this story in Matthew 22:36-40: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Notice both commandments focus on love: love for God, love for ourselves, and love for others. Jesus also said the entirety of the Scriptures hang on these two commandments! So, what He is trying to tell us is that love is the embodiment of all that is important to God.
Now, godly love is all about sacrifice. Godly love is about giving of yourself for the betterment of others. When we truly care for another person, we seek to meet their needs above our own. This is what it means to truly emulate the example of Jesus. Remember, Jesus says to love others AS MUCH AS YOURSELF!
Jesus personified sacrifice on behalf of others, leading us by example. Mark 10:45 says, “Even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Jesus is the only one worthy of our worship, yet He chose to live a life devoted to others instead of seeking glory for Himself. A question we should all embrace: If this is the way Jesus chose to live, how can we not follow His example? To live your best life while we are on this earth, we should make it all about others.
You can write the Pastor at firstname.lastname@example.org.