Obedience is better than sacrifice.

So the last time we were here together, I had the next 3 years of my life planned out: I
was going to work at home for the summer, serve with a ministry in Ghana for 6 months, then
move to California for graduate school. Well, here we are a month later and absolutely none of
that is true.

The first week of March, I went on a spring break serve trip with my school. During that
time, I got an email that the graduate program that I had been accepted to and planned to attend
had dissolved. This thing that I had dreamed about and committed to was snatched away; the door was closed and it was a door that I couldn’t pry open if I tried.

The weeks following that
trip, I begged God for clarity of what the next season of my life was supposed to look like. I
expected him to start opening doors and give me opportunity after opportunity but instead, He
started closing more doors. He closed the door of serving in Ghana with people I’ve grown to
love and the door of living a comfortable life at home for the summer.
I’m not embarrassed to say that I was a little mad at the Lord. I was operating out of the
place of praying for my wants and desires, then when He didn’t grant those wishes, I threw a fit.

Yet in this, I began to realize that I had prayed for clarity in all of these things and the Lord had
indeed given it to me, just not in the way that I wanted.
I’m still in the wake of this mess I created by chasing my own heart’s deep desires
instead of pleading for the Lord’s pure desires to lead me. I have come face-to-face with my
selfishness and I have really been confronted with my pride. I’ve realized that all those big
dreams and plans were me craving the admiration of others.

This month, the one that wants all of me has shown me what it takes to lay down my cross and follow him, even when I don’t know
what the next day looks like. He has shown me that I am to obey his voice and not the voice of
people around me; He has taught me that obedience is better than sacrifice.

1 Samuel 15:22-24
Samuel said, “Has the Lord as great a delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obedience to the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed [is better] than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as [serious as] the sin of divination (fortune-telling), and disobedience is as [serious as] false religion and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He
also has rejected you as king.” Then Saul said to Samuel, “I have sinned; for I have transgressed
the command of the Lord and your words, because I feared the people and obeyed their voice.

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