What God Wants

“O Lord, open my lips, and my mouth will declare your praise. You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it; you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.”Psalm 51:15-17

This is a reminder to us from the pen of King David about what God really wants from His children. History is filled with those who adopt an “ascetic” position in their daily walk – self-infliction of pain, or denying oneself food and drink for the sole purpose of appearing to be more sacrificial than one's neighbor.

There is certainly a time for fasting and denial of certain comforts – the Bible demands that we do this. But what often gets lost is the purpose for doing this. It is not to simply show that we can give up something we crave for a time. Rather, it is to help break our selfish spirit before God. It is very important during a fast to keep our focus on Him – not on ourselves, or our feelings of hunger or self-importance. David reminds us that God wants before Him a heart that is broken and soft – not mere sacrifice – in order to let Him mold it into what He wants us to become.


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