Let’s talk about it, the “first fruit” concept that is. So often we who are in the Church concentrate on the “first fruit” concept as only paying our tithes (rarely our offerings). It is seldom common knowledge that offering of our “first fruit” should extend beyond just giving of our monies. What about the offering of oneself? I like the way the Apostle Paul expresses the offering or the giving of oneself in 2nd Corinthian Chapter 8. Paul expressively exhorts the Church at Macedonia because of their generous giving. This Church unlike the Church at Corinth had very little. But what they had, they were willing to share with those who were less fortunate than themselves. Their giving was without coercion. Although, the giving of material substance by the Macedonians showed that the love of Christ abode richly within them, I believe what was most satisfying to the Lord, was the fact that they gave firstly themselves.
How does one give of themselves? Good question. I have found that we who call ourselves Christians must become those who are willing to give great details in our exposition. For example, if one says that one should give of one self, one must be willing to explain minutely how this can be done. The explanation should include, but not be limited to, living a consecrated life; or in other words a lifestyle that is conducive to the word of God.
We in the Church have begun to “Do Church”, instead of “Being the Church”. When we “Do Church” it allows for lack of accountability and responsibility. This some how omits the fact that there is a standard that God expects us to live by and that we should present our bodies (ourselves) as a “living sacrifice”. We should as the Church rid ourselves of religiosity and ritualistic maneuvers that leave us void and lacking. We should instead get back to the biblical obligatory directives. These directives consist of basic biblical principles such as, praying, fasting, “true worship”, and fellowship.
Lets all make a commitment in 2010. The number 10 is representative of a whole new cycle, indicative of nothing lacking. Let 2010 be the year to “begin again”. How? By offering ourselves to God, by humbling ourselves sincerely, by seeking God’s face and not his hand only, by praying without ceasing, by fasting until every yoke breaks. It is then and only then that we can expect “change”. It is then and only then that we can be assured that we have given our “first fruits”.