What We Give Up


Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of the lips that acknowledge his name. (Hebrews 13:15)

But no offering comes without loss. No sacrifice without pain.

So today, on this Thanksgiving Day, giving thanks means laying down our cynicism, our doubt, our need to control, our anger and fear. Laying them on the altar, taking the knife, and plunging a death-wound. Giving thanks means surrendering those things we’ve been holding—those things that we’ve been using to keep us safe. And instead, giving thanks means saying, “You are the One who cares for me, You are the One who keeps me safe. You are the One who holds my heart.”

And when we do this,

when we offer up our entitlement, there is room for blessing;

when we offer up our anger, there is room for forgiveness;

when we offer up our cynicism, there is room for hope;

when we offer up our doubt, there is room for faith.

And we discover that what rises from that bloody, twisted mass of sacrifice is an aroma of praise—praise and thanksgiving to the One who took them from us when we finally offered them up.