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The Ultimate Test: Foregoing the Now by Mabble Munyimani

Sacrifice - that word seems to bring up negative vibes. We often associate the word sacrifice with pain, loss, or something being withheld from us, right. No-one really jumps up with excitement about sacrificing. It is not one of those words that immediately gives you that energy. But what if I could show you that perhaps it should. Let’s take a ride down the bible meaning vs the worldly meaning of sacrifice.

What is your definition of sacrifice?

The world’s definition is to surrender or give up, or permit injury to, for the sake of something else.

John 3:16 - “For God so loved the world, that He gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believeth in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.

The definition of sacrifice according to the Bible, is too simply give. It is the sincerity of giving your prized possession, perhaps your only one, for another.

There is no question that God loved His Son, Jesus - He just had the one. However, He loved the world (us) too much that He was prepared to give His Son to death, so that we could be His!

In the Bible, we see examples of numerous people who gave, not because they had much, but felt they needed too. They were compelled to give. It was almost like a compulsion, they could not escape, resist, or shake off the need to give.

The future appeared at stake if they didn’t.

In Luke 21:1-4; Mark 12:41-44 - a poor lady came along into the church and put in two small copper coins. At the same time, Jesus witnessed other rich people put in large amounts of money. Jesus then taught His disciples that the woman gave more than the rich. The widow being on her own, did not have a source of income. Jesus taught, that her two small coins were all she had and yet she offered them to God. Jesus taught here that it was not the question of the amount you give, but rather the sacrifice made in the offering. What was important at this time for the widow, was not what would happen to her later if she gave her last coin. Her NEED to give at this point was more pressing. She wasn’t waiting until she had gathered some more money before she could give. It is almost like she could not afford to miss this opportunity to give.

I am reminded of the verse in Proverbs 3;28 - “don’t tell your neighbour to come back tomorrow if you can help them today.”

This means that if it is in your power to do good, we shouldn’t withhold it. “Withhold” means to hold back from action, to check, to refrain from. Quite often we miss the opportunity - the perfect timing to bless someone and/or receive a blessing from God, because we want to wait until…………( fill in your excuse). We need to cross our boxes, make sure we have enough in our reserve before we can help someone else, right. It’s “not right now” because “I don’t have much right now”, “I cannot afford it”, or”I don’t have any more to spare.”

Okay let’s move away from money as the sacrifice because it is not just about money. It’s also about giving your time. It is also giving yourself. In keeping with this point, I am reminded about the widow’s Olive Oil. In 2 Kings 4:1 we are introduced to the this lady who had lost her husband and now the debtors were coming to take her sons to become slaves. She asked Elisha for help, and he asked her what she had in her house. She told him that she had nothing but a little oil left. She could have kept this a secret and not let the prophet know, so that she would hold onto the little she had for herself. But she was prepared to give away the little she had in order to position herself for a blessing- where she became the entrepreneur, having so much oil that she was selling it off.

Sacrifice is about acting, doing, giving and believing without reservation in the “now” with an expectation for a greater next, tomorrow and future.

In the parable of the good Samaritan in Luke 10:25, the priest and the Levite (all notable religious people) saw the Jewish man who had been robbed, stripped and beaten up. But these two did not help the injured man. Primarily because he was full of blood which would deem him unclean for them to touch and they were very busy people - they didn’t have the time to help.

However, the Samaritan, who too had his own laws that he was bound to, was not supposed to touch a Jew. It went against the laws, culture or custom of that time, for a Samaritan. However, he stopped anyway and helped the man. What did he sacrifice - he was beneath the Jew, but he put his life on the line to help him. This would have been an opportune time to show his bitterness of how he felt about his ranking.

Clearly, he was also en-route to somewhere, but he sacrificed his time and detoured to take the injured man to care. He left the man at the hospital and vowed to return the next day - even more time. This too, cost him money. He sacrificed to pay his medical bills.

I encourage you my reader today, that sacrifice is about the opportune time to bless and to be blessed. Let’s not withhold, our possessions and ourselves and cut ourselves off from being used by God to bless and help others. Let’s not be fearful to loss or hold onto the little we have when God wants to use that to give us more. Let’s not look at sacrifice as a time of pain, loss, less or self denial. With every opportunity to sacrifice, I believe is a test of the condition our heart.

Colossians 3:1-2 - “Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.”

We should live as those who have been made alive in Christ. Amen.

Women of Reverence welcomes our guest contributor Mabble Munyimani

Mabble is a mum to 3 boys and wife to loving husband, Martin.

When her first child was younger and was starting out in school, Mabble found that she needed more parenting solutions that would help her. She was after something not just different, but also a method that would help her bring out the best in what her children had within themselves, without feeling like there is something wrong with them or that they needed fixing.

Mabble was after a parenting style that would empower her children and leave her, the mum feeling empowered, happy and confident with her abilities as a parent. And when she couldn’t find it, she and her husband went onto create and design the environment that suited their children, rather than make their children fit into environments that devalues and suppresses their natural abilities and flare.

Mabble believes children are born with everything they need for life. She is a firm subscriber of the Bible verse, 2 Peter 1;3 By His divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. And Romans 11:29, For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

Mabble believes uncovering and nurturing our children’s natural gifts is one of the parental responsibilities. We are to empower our children and collaborate with them along with the relevant people to develop these gifts. Children cannot achieve it alone.

Mabble has trained in the mental health field and has worked as a qualified mental health nurse with for over 15 years. She worked with families and children who experience life challenges in school, in the home and in various stages of development. Through her experience, she has identified that lack of expression and understanding of the child’s strengths and abilities, largely contributes to some children’s frustrations. This can be a contributory factor to some mental illnesses e.g. anxiety and depression.

Having lived in 3 continents, born in Zimbabwe Africa, studied, and lived in the UK for 12 years and now living in Australia, Mabble has acquired insights, experience and exposure to different cultures and has developed an understanding that allows her to empathise with the families she works with.

She is on a mission to activate the superpowers of all family members to achieve the family dream! And she does this by supporting parents on how to bring the joy back into parenting.

Now a family strategist, Mabble specialises in strength based learning providing a holistic approach to learning. Prioritising the learning style/preference of the child and their areas of interest to maximise learning and engagement is her recipe. She teaches and empowers parents to provide environments that promote wellbeing and build confidence, resilience, self identity and life skills in children so that child does not just survive in life, but thrive.

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