I had no idea what it was. All I saw was brown to my left, felt something powerful hit the driver’s side front of my car, saw a dark shadow right in front of me, and my car came to an immediate stop from a speed of 55 mph. A woman opened my door and asked if I was alright. Looking back, I could have been more audibly thankful, when she opened the door, showing my gratitude for her stopping and expressing her concern for how I was, but all my shocked brain could process was, “What hit me?!?” She proceeded to tell me that a deer (an 8-point buck) was attempting to cross the road and ran into the side of my car! I learned later that the buck flipped up, after hitting the side of my car, and landed on my windshield/top of my car before flying off onto the side of the road. Later, I took in the locations of the damage, including the portion of the windshield that broke through into the vehicle’s interior; the broken windshield piece was right in front of my face in the shape of a triangle with the point facing down (the point was located precisely between my two arms, which were at 10 and 2 on the steering wheel). I replayed the accident in my mind over and over and saw clearly God’s hand of provision and protection. There was my driver’s side visor that came down between the broken piece of windshield and my face, where the deer hit the top and side of my car, that the antlers or body didn’t protrude into the car, among others; they screamed God’s care of me. I could’ve easily died, but He had a purpose, yet, for me. My heart was and still is overwhelmed, and my gratitude to Him continues to fill my soul to the full, as I remember!
We took a break last post from our deep-dive into Judges 13. Today, we’ll continue our dive, beginning in Verse 19.
We already know Manoah was prepared to offer a goat in order to honor the Angel of the LORD, even though he didn’t know Who He was. We see in today’s passage that Manoah still offered the goat after the Angel of the LORD declined to eat it, but rather suggested that Manoah offer the goat as a burnt offering. As we touched on in the “Wonder–Where is the Focus of Your Offering?” post (if you have time, take a peek at that post for a better reference), Manoah shifted the focus of his offering to the LORD!
Wouldn’t we do as well to change our actions when someone calls us out on a pendulum shift that is necessary in our lives?!?
Is there anyone or anything the LORD has been using to make you aware of a shift He would like to make in your life? If so, are you listening? Maybe you are hearing, but fighting, the message…
What I love about this is…not only does Manoah shift his focus of the offering to the LORD, as the Angel of the LORD suggested, and offered the goat as a burnt offering, but he adds to his heart-felt offering a grain offering. A grain offering often followed a burnt offering. This kind of offering was different than a burnt offering. A burnt offering required blood (a foreshadowing of Christ’s sacrifice, freely offering His blood for our sins, so we could have fellowship with God the Father); a grain offering was…grain (no blood was present; this was to display one’s pure dedication and thankfulness to the LORD). A grain offering was considered by the LORD to be “a most holy offering of the offerings to the LORD made by fire (Leviticus 2:3).”
A priest took a memorial portion from the overall grain offering, which was then burnt by fire on the altar as a memorial. The rest of the grain offering was given to the priests. Not only was this offering given to the LORD as a beautiful display of thanks from one, dedicating oneself to worshipping the LORD, but it was also a display of God’s provision, as the offering was shared with the priests (whose job it was to perform the offerings and sacrifices). The grain offering that was given to the priests gave the priests bread and oil to meet their physical needs!
What’s awesome about this, as well, is that Scripture says the memorial portion was a part offered as a reminder or remembrance of what the LORD had done for them; this portion was burnt by fire on the altar and “was a sweet aroma to the LORD (Leviticus 2:2)!” The Hebrew word for “sweet” here actually means “restful, quieting, soothing.” You could think of it as when you’ve done something for someone, and they’re so touched and thankful, that they sent you to a spa to say, “Thanks!” Yeah! While this may have never happened to us, it’s that kind of restful, quieting, soothing that you can relate to, if you’ve ever been to one. Isn’t that a wonder to think about?!? The LORD, Who designed you, loves you enough to not only send His Son to fulfill the need for a burnt offering in order for you to have a relationship with the Father, but He rests in the soothing sound of your thankfulness, finds quiet fulfillment and peace in your dedication to Him, and made it all possible through the death and resurrection of His Son! He soaks in your thankfulness and your desire to be devoted to His purpose for you! I just think that’s beautiful, and it makes me want to dedicate my life to Him even more and look for every way I can to choose gratefulness…all to give Him that pleasing, quiet, soothing rest that comes from knowing His creation is doing what she was created to do. It helps us better wrap our minds around how the addition of this grain offering showed the state of Manoah and his wife’s hearts even more and how much the addition of it pleased the LORD!
What are you thankful for? How has God provided for you?
Is there an area of your life you have not devoted to His purpose for you…that you’re still hanging on to what you want?
A grain offering could be made publicly or privately. If the answers to these questions is just between you and God, please take the time to have that raw, private conversation with Him. If not, feel free to publicly share His goodness by replying or commenting to this post. All glory goes to Him!
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