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Read:  Mal 1:1-14

Focus:
Malachi 1:13  “Think of it!  Animals that are stolen and crippled and sick are being presented as offerings!  Should I accept from you such offerings as these?”  asks the LORD.

The temple is rebuilt and the people of Israel have fallen into a slackish expression of worship. The priests and the people are going through the motions of their faith and half-heartedly worshiping God. This is not pleasing to the LORD and He lets them know through the prophet Malachi.

They were supposed to bring the first and best fruits of their labors as offerings to God. Instead they were bringing defective animals, stolen offerings, and the leftovers. It was time for a wakeup call and they got it.

So how does this apply to us today? Well, let me challenge you with this question… does God get your first and best or the leftovers and the seconds of your life? This applies to giving for sure. Are you structuring your lifestyle before or after God gets the first and best fruits? Is He getting what’s left over?

This also applies to our time, our devotion and our passion. Is God getting the scraps of our time, our energy, our love and our passion? Or are we prioritizing Him first in every area?

Malachi’s words are challenging as he calls us to live a God centered life, and everything in us and our world is calling us to live a me centered life. Take a few minutes and ask the LORD to show you where you are not giving Him your first and best. Then repent and make things right with Him. He is faithful and forgiving.

Prayer:
Father – thank you for your faithfulness to me even when I fall short on my end. Forgive me where I have put myself first and you second. I choose now to give you the best and the first fruits of my life – my time, talent, treasure, worship, affection and devotion. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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