We admire sacrifices when we see them. We admire:
-athletes who sacrifice their body to make a big play for your team
-soldiers who sacrifice their lives to preserve our freedoms (All gave some. Some gave all.)
-first responders who sacrifice their own safety by running towards trouble while others run from it (i.e. 9/11)
-givers who sacrifice large percentages of their wealth to give to those in need (Giving the shirts off their backs)
-fathers/mothers/grandfathers/grandmothers/foster parents who sacrifice their own careers to provide care for their family
-volunteers who sacrifice their time for worthy causes
We admire them and often honor them. But most of us secretly hope in the back of our minds that we won't ever be in a position where we need to sacrifice. We don't ever want to have to feel the pain of sacrifice. Yet even though sacrifice can be painful at times, it always comes with a prize. The price of living for a larger purpose than one's own life.
In the Old Testament, strange sacrifices were commanded by God not because God got something out of smelling the burnt flesh of sheep/bulls/birds/grain. But through the commanded sacrifices, God was teaching Israel several lessons that can only be learned through sacrifice. Lessons such as acknowledging God owns everything, caring for the poor, worshiping with a sincere heart and sin requires a sacrifice of death, ultimately the Son of God on the Cross. Though we don't bring livestock to God to be slaughtered anymore, the lessons of the sacrifices are the same for us today.