By Dan Hamilton
Life is full of little indicators. When it comes to automobiles, brake lights or turn signal indicators on the car in front of us let us know the intentions of the other driver. Our own fuel gauge indicates the amount of gas in the tank. GPS units indicate our current location, when to turn, and when we will arrive at our destination. When driving it’s best to pay close attention to the indicators of our own vehicle and those around us. Refusing to watch all of the signals may result in catastrophe.
God directed individual members of the fallen Jewish nation to pay attention to some spiritual indicators. Looking closely at their own pattern of bringing offerings before God gave them an indication of their level of love for him.
We’re not so very different. Holding back a portion of what might be given to God or giving with a wrong spirit points to a life drifting away from the Lord.
Eager for Return
Both with God’s fallen nation and Christians today, the Lord promises to mend our broken relationship when we return to him. Christ’s parable of the lost son shows the amazing enthusiasm of the father running to greet his prodigal child.
Let’s make sure we take time to check our spiritual indicators. Closely examine your treatment of the less fortunate. Take a look at your checkbook to find where your heart is. Do you notice some message from the Lord, in the form of a person or a series of events, that grabs your attention? It’s time to examine the warning signals and make the needed changes.
God is not dependent upon our spiritual gifts or our finances for his kingdom to thrive. His will is always accomplished whether or not we become a part of it. Still the promise of abundant blessing is ours when we participate: “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap” (Luke 6:38).
Dan and his wife, Karen, have two adult children and four fantastic grandchildren. They have ministered with the Croton Church of Christ near Columbus, Ohio, for over 30 years.