Nothing Else Will Do
Scripture Reading: Genesis 4:1-7
When it was time for the harvest, Cain presented some of his crops as a gift to the Lord. Abel also brought a gift—the best of the firstborn lambs from his flock. The Lord accepted Abel and his gift,
If you have been around children for any length of time, especially young children, you will observe that they go through a stage in life where sharing beyond the scope of the people that they interact with on a daily basis, is something that must be developed. And this, however, is perfectly normal. It is something that all children grow through and a part of their development. For a season, a child will exhibit a blatant unwillingness to share with others and only through the forceful request of someone in authority, are they willing to share what they were withholding – giving only the smallest portion, hoping to satisfy the request. You see, in one stage of life, the smallest portion is enough to satisfy the request, simply because they are still growing and still learning. But in another stage of life, as children mature and have more understanding, the same portion that was received on one level is not acceptable on the next. So what happens when it seems as if what was only supposed to last for season, carries over into the next? What happens when it seems as if a child has not outgrown this stage?
In the story of Cain and Abel we find two young men, both who went through the same evolution of time and development, both who entered similar seasons in life. However, we also see so many great contrasts in the lives of Cain and Abel – one that we see that stands out so strongly is the fact that Cain gave God some of what he had, while the bible tells us that Able gave God the best of what he had. We learn in the text that God is the ultimate giver of favor, but we also learn that we must be willing to give God what He asks for and not what we have left over. It was not that Cain did not fulfill the requirement, but like the child that reluctantly gave of what they had in one stage of his life, Cain chose to withhold his best from God – hoping that less would do. I challenge you today to be a person who gives God their best. Be a person who’s willing to give God your very best – realizing that when He pours His favor on you, nothing you have ever given up is going to be more valuable than what He wants to give you in return.
Prayer: God I thank You today that Your favor is available to us. I pray right now, with my friend. I pray right now with this person who is believing You for so much, that as they begin to calibrate their hearts to You, as they start to give You the best of what they have, that You would begin to pour Your favor all over their lives. I pray that even in a culture filled with people who give You the things that they don’t want, I pray that they will have the strength to give You their best – realizing that when You pour Your favor on them, it will be so much greater than anything they’ve had to give up along the way. God today I declare favor in their life in Jesus name, Amen.
Phrase of the day: God deserves my very best and nothing less!
P.S. This is an excerpt from a devotional that I hope to release in late 2014. Let me know what you think.