S78P2 – Laid on the altar: our works

Heb. 13:15-16

Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that openly profess his name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.

He had been a spiritual father to many, but there was one boy in particular who really touched his heart.  That boy had a rougher start than all the others, but he would emerge changed and victorious.  The young boy was very appreciative and would not stop thanking the man every chance that he got.  He certainly had much for which to be thankful, but the man did not necessarily seek praise for his work. There was only one thing that would make him feel like his work with that child was worth it.  All he asked was for that boy, once he became a man, to do the same for another.  That would be the biggest thanks that boy could give him.

There is a connection between the praises we give God and the work we put forward for others.  Surely we praise God simply because He is who He is, but we also thank him for all of the marvelous things He does for us.  We can praise Him and thank him and worship him for those blessings, but there is other fruit we should produce if we are truly thankful.  We should want to pay those blessings forward by blessing others.  In all actuality, the way we serve others often is God’s way of blessing them through us.  Our works for their benefit may be an answer to their prayers, and God may be merely using us to give them something to be thankful for.

I remember being a child and often feeling invisible.  One thing that always surprised me and made me feel important was when an adult acknowledged my presence and made time for me.  I remember that, and it causes me to interact with children in a certain way.  When I enter someone’s home I make sure that I do not address only the adults.  I know what it is like to feel acknowledged as a child, and my appreciation of those moments can be shown only by my doing the same for the children I encounter today.  Father, make us people who praise You and thank You not only by the words of our lips but by the works of our hands, pouring out a sacrifice of blessings as You pour out to us.