Psalm 50:14 says; “Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving.” What does that really mean? We usually think of the word sacrifice as giving something up, renouncing it or suffering loss. I’ve often heard preachers say that it means we thank God even when we don’t feel like it. I think it is deeper than that.
In the Old Testament, an altar was used to receive the sacrifice – a lamb or a bull or a ram or maybe a pigeon if you were poor. It was a place to come and lay something down before the Lord and say in essence: “This is from me, God. You are owed this and behind it is my heart. I worship you because you are worthy.”
When we offer God a sacrifice of thanksgiving it is the same way. We are acknowledging Him as the source of every good thing we have. At a regular altar, when the sacrifice was burned, it was plain for all to see. When the heart behind it was right, God delighted in it.
A sacrifice of thanksgiving should be intentional. Not just a casual, “Thanks God” when a prayer is answered but a time for meditating on ALL that God has done for us, ALL that He is to us and then purposefully bringing it before Him, arranging it beautifully on our heart-made altar and presenting it to Him as an act of worship.
Now would be a good time to gather up all those blessings and build the biggest altar of thanksgiving you have ever made.