“Take from among you an offering to the Lord. Whoever is of a willing heart,”
As I was finishing up Exodus, this verse really stuck out to me. In fact, the whole rest of chapter 35 did. It talks about the offerings given for the tabernacle of the Lord in the camp of the Israelites, and the Lord asks in this verse for those who are willing to give. Throughout the rest of this chapter the emphasis of freewill continues to show itself. For example:
“Then every some came whose heart was stirred, and everyone whose spirit was willing,” (vs 21)
“They came, both men and women, as many as had a willing heart,” (vs 22)
“The children of Israel brought a freewill offering to the Lord, all the men and women whose hearts were willing,” (vs 29)
Now the Lord may not be asking me to bring material to build a tabernacle in the literal sense, but He is asking me to serve Him with a willing heart. It’s a choice that only I can make. He can prepare a way for me, but it is only I that can choose out of my own freewill to step out onto the water and follow Him. The Lord doesn’t force me, He only asks that my heart be willing. It means absolutely nothing if my service isn’t of a willing heart, because is that really glorifying to Him? If I am going to serve Him, I want it to be out of a thankful heart for what He has done in my life, not because I feel like its a burden that I must do. Just look at how many times the word “willing” or “freewill” is used in chapter 35, if it was repeated so many times it’s probably for a reason. That is my prayer, that whatever task I am given, I do it with a willing heart no matter what it is. Whether teaching in schools, running kid’s club, cleaning or outreaches, it all means nothing if I’m doing it and my heart isn’t in the right place. What the Lord asks for above all is a humble heart and open hands, willing to receive and have taken away. I am willing to be used for His glory, to be His servant, and His hands and feet. I am willing to be taken outside my comfort zone to the open waters where I can know more of You.