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Learn and Experience the Mystical Power of Tithing
What is Tithing?
Tithing is the practice of giving away 10% of our income (tithe means “tenth”), usually to a charitable cause. In the biblical times, it is 10% of their income or produce. The practice of tithing is considered integral to the process of wealth creation. Deuteronomy 8:18 says, “Remember the Lord thy God, for it is He that gives thee power to get wealth.”
No one likes to think about tithing when it comes to God and His church. Some of us would think that it is far easier to pray, sing praises to God and help others than it is to turn over 10% of everything we earn to God. Yet God blesses those who tithe, and it is one of the most basic Biblical principles to test our faithfulness and stewardship.
Give to Receive, So We Can Give Again!
We often think about all of our own needs that we put tithing last on our list. We usually say, “If I had anything left over, I would certainly give my tenth to God.” Eventually, we end up not tithing at all because we never have anything left. I discovered that if I tithe first by setting aside my 10% for God as soon as my paycheck hits my bank account and/or before spending and paying my bills, I was surprised to find that I can give my 10%, and the rest of my needs are still met. The best part - God certainly rewards and blesses me for my faithfulness! I may not have enough money after every expense has been taken or deducted, but whatever was left was always put to good use. Tithing truly ensures that our needs will be met.
God is in the blessing business. He wants to bless us, and would like to bless us with riches on earth, but He also would like us to share those blessings. We should be conduits, not reservoirs. Jesus said, "...if you have not been faithful in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches?" (Luke 16:11).
We are only giving back to God what was always His. God is honored when we are faithful. We will be rewarded in countless ways, especially when we acknowledge that God is the true owner and giver of all that we have.
As a body of Christ, we try to further God’s Kingdom here on earth and share His comfort and good news to others. And by giving our 10% for His Kingdom, we reach those who are in need.
How do we give up one tenth of what we earn and not ruin ourselves financially?
We ask God for everything and anything. We pray for health, for guidance, for comfort and peace, etc. Why not turn our financial concerns - and our money - over to God? We should give back to God a mere slice of what He gives us. After all, everything that we have belongs to Him. We are only stewards of His riches on earth.
We turn over so much of our cares, our concerns, our personal problems and our health issues to God. But how many of us have asked God to guide us in our financial decisions? We should ask God to help us live and work in order to return to Him as much as we can for His work here on earth.
When we tithe, we don't know how the money will be used, so we hesitate to hand over our money. But when there is a fundraiser for something specific – i.e., funds for the church ceiling or basement, to help those that were devastated with typhoon or fire, or to help a family we know, or for a particular charity, we always find a way to give. Why wait for something specific before you give? There are always people in need, missionaries without funding, hungry children to be fed, etc. Just tithed freely. Do it lovingly.
As God’s children, we don't realize how truly God has blessed us financially. We usually think that it is hard to tithe. But it should not be, particularly when we have been blessed by God. God made us so successful in many areas in our lives, and we should learn to use it wisely to help others and to further His work and His kingdom.
Ken Blanchard, the author of The One Minute Manager, said, "I absolutely believe in the power of tithing and giving back. My own experience about all the blessings I've had in my life is that the more I give away, the more comes back. That is the way life works, and that is the way energy works."
Luke 6:38 says, “Give, and it will be given to you: good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over will be put into your bosom. For with the same measure that you use, it will be measured back to you.”
So the next time you think about giving to God, remember that all of your blessings came from Him, and give back your ten percent with a happy heart. He gives us so much and asks for so little!
Benefits of tithing
Tithing overcomes poverty or scarcity thinking. It helps us develop a greater sense of abundance. We are more open and receptive to receiving money. If we think abundance, we are more likely to experience abundance.
Tithing can support a worthy cause, especially if the money we tithe is put to good use.
Tithing helps us achieve greater wealth. Whenever we earn more money, our tithes increase as well, so our cause(s) receive greater financial support.
Through tithing, the Lord is magnified. God takes pleasure in our well-being, health and wholeness and peace. Psalm 35:27 says, “...Let the Lord be magnified, Who has pleasure in the prosperity of His servant.”
True Purpose of Tithing
The true purpose of tithing is “to serve the highest good of all”. But tithing is only one of many ways to serve the highest good, certainly not the only way. There are many other ways to serve the greater good. Money is not the only way to give.
- Give of your time. Perform an act of service to a cause you find is worthy.
- Give of your talents or skills to help someone who can’t afford to pay for them.
- Give information and share your knowledge freely with others who may benefit by it.
- Give loving thoughts and intend the best for other people. Pray or meditate for others. It is one of the easiest ways you can do. They don't even have to know you pray for them.
- Give a caring touch, ie, a pat on the back, a handshake, a hug, a massage.
- Give someone a kind word each day. Be an encourager. Let others know you care about them.
Some of us lose sight of the real purpose of tithing. Sometimes, I see even myself feeling guilty about not tithing (or not tithing enough). But I realize, it does not make an individual a bad person if he/she does not tithe. If one does not feel a desire to tithe, he/she should not beat himself/herself up about it. We should remember, we serve a loving, forgiving and generous God. We should see Him as the One who supplies all that we need. Tithing must be done from a state of abundance. Give unconditionally. If we harbor thoughts of scarcity as we tithe, then tithing will only become a source of incongruence.
There is nothing wrong with giving to charities or institutions, but if you are supporting those that conduct medical research on cruel experiments on animals, for example, how can we say that this is truly working “for the highest good of all,” then it would be incongruent to support those. If the cause is somehow rooted in cruelty, war, greed, or other scarcity thinking, are we going to “water” those roots?
We give in a manner which makes us feel good, not guilty. Whatever we give is a seed we plant. It is not a debt we owe, but a seed we sow. Then we can certainly expect a harvest from that seed. Seed time, then harvest - it is a natural law of the universe!
“Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” Galatians 6:7
My Own Testimony
For many years, I have been a faithful tither. Because of this, God has blessed me and even my loved ones and He began moving in my life and the lives of my loved ones with miracle after miracle. When I was single, I had been blessed to own two homes (one for rental income, but I was never blessed with good-paying renters) and yet I had not been behind in payments, and had not faced foreclosure, though there were also times I became flat broke. Before I could even go that route, God has already provided and met my needs. I even lost my job, and yet I didn't know how I met all my pressing obligations. Mortgage, car payments, insurance, utilities, etc., all taken cared of at the perfect time. Somehow, he provided a way for me to obtain decent and good paying part-time jobs, in times of need.
After I got married, my husband and I had been looking for a house that is closer to work, for we travel 30 miles each way every day. My husband had been looking into foreclosures and short-sales or those fix-uppers because that was the only way we could afford with his income. The Lord has blessed us during the next four years. I was able to acquire and built credit on my own and was able to qualify for mortgage application with my husband. We went and look again in the development where we were going to buy a home which is closer to our place of work. We've got enough to buy a decent re-sale home that is on move-in condition. We contacted our real estate agent, and we had six homes scheduled to be shown that day. As we drove into the development, the agent took us to our scheduled third house. It was the one that was being built when we started looking at houses in that development four years passed, but we did not bother checking it out as it was not within my husband's price range at that time. Four years later, it was put on short-sale for a price that was less than our approved price range, and it is a newer home. And the bonus: when we went to view the inside of the house, we have a full view through the kitchen and bedroom windows the building and parking lot of the company where we both work. We prayed for a home close to work, but we did not expect that close!
My husband and I rejoiced as we moved into our first little house, realizing that God had saved it for us until we were able to afford it. It was then I realized, it was His Way, not my way nor my husband's way.
A valuable lesson: we just can't outgive God. He will open up the windows of heaven to provide for our needs when we come to Him in loyalty to His Word. God makes miracle provisions all the time! He will give back to us - and usually in ways we do not know.
Call upon Me and I will answer thee. I will show you great and might things that you do not know. (Jeremiah 33:3).
I also remember how I asked God for a nice Christian man and He gave me a man of God for a husband. When I was younger and looking for greener pasture, I asked God to help me find a job overseas, He gave me the opportunity to work and live in three continents: North America, Asia, and North Africa, and even became later on a citizen of two countries. There are many, many other instances I could share how God has provided for my needs and had blessed me.
"Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver (2 Corinthians 9:7).