This week I have been reading Malachi. It is the last book of the Old Testament and sometimes, quite frankly, I flip right past it. The verses that caught my attention today were Malachi 1:6-14.
"And when you do offer something to me, it's a hand-me-down, or broken, or useless. Do you think I'm going to accept it? A curse on the person who makes a big show of doing something great for me—an expensive sacrifice, say—and then at the last minute brings in something puny and worthless...I'll not put up with it!" ~The Message
Our offering reveals our attitude toward God and others. Offering second rate "stuff," when we have the 1st rate goods to give, indicates how little we truly think of others.
~What do I offer?
~What might be considered blemished?
~Do I ever make second rate offers?
~What attitude am I demonstrating to those I love with the offerings I give?
~What might I need to do to re-examine when and how I am giving my best?
I'm still mulling this over in application to my own life.
However, I began to compile a list of possible second bests.
~A half attempt at praying on the way to bed
~Offering to make a meal for a neighbor, but using clearanced (day old) groceries.
~Serving without heart
~Committing to volunteer but inconsistently following through
~Pouring flat soda for someone else but opening a new can for myself
~Carrying on a conversation without making eye contact
~Commenting on a blog without reading the post
~Making the kids sandwiches with the stale bread better thrown to the birds (literally)
~Playing trains with one hand and reading a magazine with the other
~Bailing out of a visit with a friend for whatever reason we've come up with for being "too busy!"
~Going to visit with the friend but not putting effort and love into positive conversation.
~Privately, or not so privately, pouting about the choice someone else made for their special occasion even though we offered the choice.
~Communicating with our spouse with the TV, or twitter, getting our attention in the background.
Starting today I want to pay more attention to what I have to offer and what I choose to give. I want the best for others. First.
What do you think?