“Let each one give as he has made up his own mind and purposed in his heart, not reluctantly or sorrowfully or under compulsion, for God loves (He takes pleasure in, prizes above other things, and is unwilling to abandon or to do without) a cheerful giver whose heart is in his giving.” 2 Corinthians 9:7
Forget for a moment that we have always been taught to give a tithe or first fruits of ten percent. Forget that we are encouraged to give above and beyond that with offerings. I would rather see a person give 5% with joy and gladness than that same person give 20% begrudgingly or through some sort of misplaced religious obligation. Tithing can become as much a religious exercise as any of the other dried up dusty traditions that Jesus railed against. Live that way long enough, and you will become one of those people who throw a twenty dollar bill in the plate every other week convincing yourself that your tip is pleasing to God and is a generous display of your devotion.
Think instead about what the tithe does. In the natural, it provides for the needs of the pastors and the staff. It provides for the efficient operation of the church building. It provides for benevolences and missions. It is what enables us to meet together and bask in the presence of the Spirit of God corporately each week.
In the spiritual sense, God responds to our obedience by opening the floodgates of heaven and pouring out blessings of peace, prosperity and health. It is the one place in the bible (Malachi 3) where He admonishes us to test Him to see if He will not honor His word. It’s like He’s saying, “I dare you to step out in faith.”
Through giving, we are freed from our trust in money and our fear of a lack of money, and we grow in our trust in His ability to provide everything we need and more. We are engaging in the process of learning to walk in the supernatural. We are babies learning how to go from crawling to walking to running. And our ability and willingness to give grows as we grow in grace. Millionaires like J.C. Penny and Colonel Sanders were rumored to have tithed 90% and lived on the remainder.
So, when the time comes to give on Sunday morning or Wednesday night, don’t do it with your mind but with your heart. Give with joy, give with hilarity, and give what you have determined in your heart. Give with the understanding that you really can’t give God more than He can give you, since He gave us 100% of Himself.
And remember this…the tithe is not just your wealth. You can tithe your time, your talents, and your love. Challenge yourself to find ways during the day to offer up a tithe of all that you are. A nice way to start the day is with bible study and a few quality minutes (or even an hour) in prayer!
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of Our Prattville or its editor or publisher.
Article by Cameron Reeder
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