7 Everyone should give whatever they have decided in their heart. They shouldn’t give with hesitation or because of pressure. God loves a cheerful giver. 8 God has the power to provide you with more than enough of every kind of grace. That way, you will have everything you need always and in everything to provide more than enough for every kind of good work. 9 As it is written, He scattered everywhere; he gave to the needy; his righteousness remains forever. 2 Corinthians 9:7-9, CEB
(We’re in the middle of a series on sacrifice for people in recovery that starts on Day 1. Get caught up or you may feel lost.)
From yesterday: “We learn, in recovery from codependency, not to define ourselves by the level of reliance another person has on us….So, how does this align with a faith that preaches the importance of self-sacrificial love for the sake of others?”
This is a complicated issue, of course. Sacrifice, and carrying your cross, are important biblical concepts. We’re not created to live entirely self-indulgent lives where we are concerned solely with our own needs. We know, also, that sacrifice is an earnest expression of faithful loving mercy. How, then, do we figure out how to sacrifice thoughtfully? The world of recovery is highly complex. It’s not a place where we can sacrifice haphazardly because, sometimes, things that look and sound like “sacrifice” are actually something altogether different. So, I have a couple recommendations.
- Stop using the word “sacrifice,” to describe codependent behavior.
- Sacrifice done for the sake of others should always be something that legitimately benefits the other person.
- Sacrifice is earnest, and stems from a legitimately cheerful or joyful place within us (hence, 2 Cor. 9:7).
I’ll touch on each of these in greater detail over the next few days.