Faith, Grace, Hope, promises

The Perfect Sacrifice

“Come, let us return to the Lord.
He has torn us to pieces;
now he will heal us. He has injured us;
now he will bandage our wounds.
In just a short time he will restore us,
so that we may live in his presence.
Oh, that we might know the Lord!
Let us press on to know him.
He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn
or the coming of rains in early spring.”

“O Israel and Judah,
what should I do with you?” asks the Lord.
“For your love vanishes like the morning mist
and disappears like dew in the sunlight.
I sent my prophets to cut you to pieces—
to slaughter you with my words,
with judgments as inescapable as light.
I want you to show love,
not offer sacrifices.
I want you to know me
more than I want burnt offerings.
But like Adam, you broke my covenant
and betrayed my trust.
Hosea 6:1-7

Does it ever seem like each week is busier than the one before? That’s certainly how I feel right now. Last week, it was kids and pigs. This week, I’ve been putting in 12+ hour days to keep up with work. I am literally exhausted.

So exhausted it seems I haven’t even given a thought to Holy Week. Here we are, on the eve of Good Friday, and my mind is anywhere except the sacrifice my Savior made for me.

Today, as I was driving to an appointment, I turned on my Bible app to listen to some scripture.

He has torn us to pieces; now he will heal us

Have you been torn up? Had your life ripped to shreds? Have you experienced devastating loss?

Perhaps God’s greater plan is to allow us to experience pain and loss so He Can lovingly put us back together.

He has injured us; now he will bandage our wounds

Injuries happen in this life. Broken bones that need to be splinted, set. Joints that need to be surgically replaced.

Our Great Physician is always here, bandaging our wounds, repairing our injuries. He is the One who can take our injuries and make us brand new.

In just a short time he will restore us, so that we may live in his presence

Sometimes it seems He is slow in restoration. And yet, in hindsight, we can always see where He faithfully reached down, did His work in His perfect timing. In the process of waiting, we learn to live in His presence, experience His perfect peace.

Oh, that we might know the Lord! Let us press on to know him

Our sole purpose in this life is to know the Lord, deeply and intimately. This one thing we must do, press forward to grab hold of the life He has planned for us, of our Savior who came as the perfect sacrifice.

He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn or the coming of rains in early spring

Does He seem silent? Does He seem distant? Does He seem as if He doesn’t hear or care? Keep pressing in to Him. Keep seeking. Keep asking. The answer is coming, as surely as the seasons change.

I want you to show love, not offer sacrifices

What is our response to the indescribable love of our Savior? To the overwhelming sacrifice of His son given for us so many years ago?

Love. Just as He demonstrated His love for us on the tree 2000 years ago. Just as He shed His blood for us to cover our sins out of His great love for us. Just as He suffered bruising and humiliation because He chose to be the payment for our sins.

We, too, must love. Love God. Love others. Love extravagantly. Love without reason. Love unconditionally.

I want you to know me more than I want burnt offerings

And what does God want more than anything? He wants us to know Him. He wants us to experience His healing power. He wants us to trust Him with our wounds. He wants us to experience His restoration power. He wants us to know Him, to trust Him to show up as faithfully as the seasons change.

He wants us to love…just as He loved us.

As we enter this Resurrection weekend, I pray that you will be able to press in to the One…the One who loves perfectly, the One who was the perfect sacrifice for your sin.

Lord Jesus, we are overwhelmed by your goodness and your grace. We are overwhelmed by your willingness to go to a cross and suffer and die for us. We are overwhelmed by your ability to restore us, to heal us, to bandage our wounds. We are simply overwhelmed by you. Thank you, Lord Jesus, for using every wound to draw us into relationship with you. Thank you for allowing us to experience you in all your fullness and grace. In Jesus’ Holy name we pray, amen.

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13 thoughts on “The Perfect Sacrifice”

  1. I want you to know me more than I want burnt offerings…….

    What a great comfort from the God of the universe!!!!

    Great post! May you and your family have a great celebration of Christ’s resurrection.

  2. What a healing balm these scriptures and thoughts have been to me tonight. To one who, at times, feels more broken than I have ever experienced, to be reminded of the vastness of our Savior’s betrayal and brokenness is overwhelming. And yet, He overcame his own brokenness and that of the whole world by drawing upon the strength of His Father, and OUR Father, if we are in personal relationship with Him.

    As I am being refined in the fire, I glory in the thought that I can overcome because HE overcome! Glory!!!

    As I pray for you and your children, Dena, I ask that you would also mention me to the Father when He brings me to your mind.

    Blessings!!!

    1. You got it, Beverly! I wouldn’t trade my brokenness for anything because through the brokenness, I experienced the healing of my Savior! What a blessing! Lord Jesus, give my sweet sister Beverly strength to get through the dark days. Give her courage to face her fears. Give her comfort and peace to guard her heart and mind. In Jesus name I pray, amen.

  3. Loved your powerful and insightful words. May God continue to bless you and your ministry. I look forward to your posts.

  4. Dena, thank you for using your incredible gift and ministry of writing to encourage us all. I always look forward to your posts and tremendously appreciate them. I honestly don’t know how you do it all…..yet the life you are living is so purposeful and impactful to so many. Know that you are making a difference and are appreciated. I discovered your writing one night when I googled the words..,,”when you feel God has failed you” . I pray God will refresh you and your family as you refresh so many others (Prov. 11:25)

    1. Thank you so much for the sweet words of encouragement. Yes, I felt as if He had failed me…and yet He makes all things beautiful in His time. Hold tight! The answers are coming!

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