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A Living Sacrifice 
Picture Book Bible Devotion

Being a living sacrifice is not a popular topic in our day and time. It's associated with giving up something that you value.

Webster's defines sacrifice as "to give up for the sake of something else."

In fact, that is the essence of sacrifice - it's done for the sake of something else or rather someone else.

Paul declares in Romans 12:1, "Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God--this is your spiritual act of worship."

"In view of God's mercy": God's own sacrifice (gave up for our sake) of His Son

"living sacrifices": not dead like in the Old Testament, but living

What is it in our daily living that we can "give up for the sake of others?"

Little Rose of Sharon

Use the children's picture book Little Rose of Sharon to creatively depict the true meaning of being a living sacrifice.

Summary: A little rose in the Valley of Sharon is so pleased to show off her beautiful petals to her Creator as He strolls by her in the early morning sunshine. His smile fills her with a sense of wonder.

Later that evening a storm rolls in, and the little rose struggles to hold on to her beautiful petals. As the storm ceases, the little rose is relieved to find she has not lost a single petal.

However, she notices a small white form in the grass beneath her and realizes it's a dove's egg that has fallen from its nest.

As the cool evening breeze begins to blow, the little rose realizes the baby dove in the egg will not be able to survive the nightime chill.

It is then, she does what she knows she must. She drops her petals one by one until the egg is covered in a rose-petal blanket.

The morning brings great joy as a tiny chirp is heard beneath the petals and the Creator bestows honor upon the rose - not for her beautiful petals, but for the beauty of her sacrifice.

What things in our lives could we risk sacrificing for God?

How about: our plans, our dreams, our time, our savings account, our reputation,...the list could go on and on.

In view of His mercy though, how can we not lay it all down for His purpose?

Listen to the Story:

A Bible Story Example
Living Sacrifice

Esther in the Old Testament also knew the meaning of being a "living sacrifice."

Esther's uncle, Mordecai, knew she was the only hope for the Jewish people to survive against Haman's plan to have them all executed. It would mean she would have to seek an audience with the king without being invited.

This could have certainly meant death for her. In Esther 4:14, Mordecai says to Esther,"For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father's family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?"

"For such a time as this..."

Have you ever considered God has placed you here, in these circumstances, to be used in a marvelous way for Him?

A Song - "For Such a Time"
Living Sacrifice

Wayne Watson released a song with this title in 1998. The chorus is as follows:

For such a time as this

I was placed upon the earth

To hear the voice of God

And do His will

Whatever it is

For such a time as this

For now and all the days He gives

I am here, I am here

And I am His

For such a time as this

To hear the voice of God and do His will whatever it is...that's being

a living sacrifice!

Rose of Sharon Red

Photo by Jovana Nesic

The Little Rose of Sharon sacrificed what she thought was her greatest possession; when in reality, it was through the action of sacrificing she learned what true beauty looks like.

It looks like L-O-V-E.

2 Corinthians 2:14-15a says, "But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing;"

Like the Little Rose of Sharon, we too can be a "fragrance of Christ" to the world around us as we are "living sacrifices" for Him.

Bible Devotion Activate
Living Sacrifice

1.  Think of one thing today you can lay aside for someone else's benefit to serve the Lord.  This looks different for all of us; it may look like: 

  • giving your time and attention to someone
  •  giving up your Starbuck's coffee and offering that money as a gift in some way
  • instead of watching that TV show, spending that time with God

2.  Take time to smell the roses and let them remind you to be a fragrance of Christ to those around you.  Maybe even buy yourself a rose for this purpose!

© Copyright 2013 Susan Smart

Other devotions like "A Living Sacrifice"

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