Halfhearted Obedience


“Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the Lord?
To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.”

1 Samuel 15:22

When God instructs His people, His words are direct and clear.

Take, for example, God’s commands to King Saul: “Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy all that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys” (I Samuel 15:3). While not pretty, certainly precise.

Saul did exactly as God commanded. Well, mostly. He let the Amalekite king and several animals live.

The prophet, Samuel, confronts Saul about his disobedience. Saul starts verbally dancing, noting how his troops destroyed everything except for the best sheep and cattle. Those, Saul explains, were spared to sacrifice to God (v. 15). Talk about a schmoozer!

Samuel cuts right to the chase with Saul: “To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams” (v. 22). God wants our obedience not our halfhearted offerings.

Saul trusted himself more than he trusted God. How often do we give lip-service promises to God, do some or most of what He tells us, and call it good? Who is it we’re really trying to please?

Do you love God enough to trust Him all the way, no exceptions, no excuses, no holding back?



Make time and find space to be present with God. Listen.
Is God clearly asking something of you or from you?
Promise God you will do all He instructs, no exceptions. Then, plan your first step.


Michaela Wickham

Love adventure? Meet Michaela. She’s always down for a rugged hike, a distant voyage, or a heart-of-the-city venture. Even more, Michaela is ready to explore and traverse whatever’s necessary to help students and adults discover the freedom, joy, and purpose…

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