Never before had God seen a soul’s travail. Sure, He had received countless offerings of the body as down through the ages sacrificial fires had blazed, torturing their involuntary victims. But, never before had there been the surrender of the human will, the travail of the human soul. Thus the heart of the Heavenly Father was never satisfied until there came One who was willing to delight in doing His will. But when Jesus came all other sacrifices ceased. He came giving nothing but Himself – His very soul. From Bethlehem’s manger He poured out His soul unto death. From daybreak to mid-day He climbed the heights of Calvary. One by one He gave up the stages of His being. He surrendered His childhood in subjection, turned over His youth to toil, and delivered His manhood by walking down the Dolorosa. This was the travail of His soul.
Don’t you know that it is you that the Father desires most? He doesn’t want your pains or possessions, your gifts or griefs, your trinkets or tortures. He wants you. He desires nothing more from you than your will to give all of yourself. Has He come and commanded that you give your beloved Isaac? If so, it is not really Isaac He wants. His desire is for you, and it is a desire that never ceases. Do you doubt this is true? Then get up early in the morning and march to Moriah. Carry in your arms that which you love, and offer it on the sacrifice of your will. Then you will hear a small voice behind you saying, “Don’t hurt the boy or do anything to him; for now I know…”
Give Him your will and He will ask nothing more. Give Him your heart and He will give back all of your gifts with interest – the interest of selfless joy. Your Isaac will be returned to you when you have reached the sacrificial summit of Moriah. Earth will be poured back into your life when you have first sought His kingdom and righteousness. You will not longer be asked to sacrifice when you have surrendered your spirit, for the spirit that has been first broken by love is surely the soul’s travail.