Posted by: hugapoohlouise | June 14, 2010

Is there a skunk on your altar?

There is a skunk on the altar.
What does your worship incense smell like?
Is Our Offering a sweet-smelling savor to God

Last Sunday as I was driving to church the Lord asked me a question.  “Melissa, are you offering me a sweet-smelling savor?“  You can only imagine my surprise as my mind was preoccupied with trying to fight the distractions of the world while focusing on God and entering into His house with praise and thanksgiving.

As the thoughts raced through my head as fast as I was driving, I mentally noted a dead animal lying in the road.   Consciously, I swerved to miss running over it again, but subconsciously I noted “Oh, no it is a skunk!”  Or for you southerners Pole Cat.  As soon as our van passed over the skunk it was filled with the most repulsive stench .  The van was permeated with the smell and there was no escaping it.  As my kids yelled out “Mom what is that smell?” the Lord questioned me again, when you worship Me how does your  incense smell?  Isn’t it just like our God to drive the point home so that we can’t miss it or try to take credit for it ourselves?  Needless to say since that day, every time I have went somewhere we either saw a dead skunk or smelled one.

So I began to meditate on what God was asking me.  When I enter His house, His gates and His courts with praise and worship is it a sweet-smelling savor?  Or am I simply placing a skunk on the altar and racing to get my needs/wants met?  In our lives today we are all so busy, we get caught up in what needs to be done in the quickest possible way.   As the Lord convicted my heart, I began to realize I was guilty of attempting to offer the Lord my first fruits in the pace that I tackled the world, fast.  I ran through His house, gates, and courts, instead of taking time to enjoy praising, worship Him and enter into His presence with an attitude of worship, my first fruits were given in a hurry so I could tackle the next item on my to-do list.  God wants our first fruits, but He wants them from us with the right attitude.

Isaiah 5:20 says “Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!” KJV When we approach God to offer what is proper, don’t do it in a rush which in God’s eyes is the equivalent of  laying a skunk on the altar.  Which is  offering the bitter for the sweet.   I don’t know about you but I don’t want the Lord’s nostrils filled with the repulsive scent of a skunk when I enter into His presence and offer up my praise, do you?  I want Him to savor the sweet smell that my praise, worship and thanksgiving brings to Him.  To surround Him with an acceptable sacrifice.

So next time you get ready for your quiet time or driving to church stop focusing on what’s on your to do list, what you want/need and prepare yourself mentally, physically and spiritual to enter His presence with your best.  I’ve asked myself how can I do this, below are some things that I have found to help me:

1.  Before getting out of bed every morning.  Stop and  get focused on Your Heavenly Father.  Thank Him for giving you one more day that was not promised to you.  Thank Him for saving you.  Thank Him for whatever comes to your mind.  Remind yourself, that we can do nothing without Him.  Just focus on Him and His mercy, grace and loving kindness.

2.  Get up earlier than you normally would for church.  Read His word and meditate on it.  Spend time renewing your  mind as we are commanded in Romans 12:1-2.  I love the phrase, take a bath in His Word, let it wash all over you and make you clean.  If this is a new concept to you, you might try using a devotional book to help you get started.

3.  Start a blessings journal.  Each day begin writing down five things that have blessed you.  This will serve to build your gratitude attitude.

Our sweet-smelling savor of worship and praise should come from our heart.  Which will represent our love for Him.  After all He is the most important person in our life and if it wasn’t for Him offering His ultimate sacrifice where would be?  The skunk on the road?

M

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