About ten years ago I decided to get serious about my Christian beliefs. I wanted to be obedient to the word of God and stop picking and choosing the scriptures I would adhere to. I wanted to submit myself to God and stop be a disciplined Christian. I decided to fully commit to tithing %10 of my income.
Tithing is a controversial and heavily criticized practice. I don’t understand the criticism. Churches have bills and expenses like everyone else. I think that if you attend a church that is ministering to people, changing lives and reaching out to the surrounding community in a charitable way you should help support the church financially. Nothing in this world is free and I believe in putting your money where your mouth is.
You can tell where a person’s heart really is by where they consistently put their money. If they spend money at a sporting goods store, a book store, or a store that sells designer fashions you can tell where their passion lies. If a person spends most of their money on their child or a lover you have no doubt about how they feel about that person. If a Christian believes in their church and trusts their pastoral staff they should financially support their mission as long as it aligns with scripture. If they don’t trust the pastor or support the churches mission they should find a different church.
Tithing has been a great spiritual exercise for me. It has taught me to not become too attached to money and material possessions. I have also learned a lot about generosity, sacrifice and selflessness. Whether you have a lot of money or a little it is very easy to exalt money in your life and make it a god. Tithing has given me a different perspective on money. Money is very important but it is not the end all be all. Money is not a constant. Money and it’s source is easy come easy go.
I have to be honest. There have been times when I had to make a mental IOU to God because if I wrote a check for %10 of what I anticipate earning the next week the check would have bounced. But I will also say that tithing has in no way been a detriment to me. I’ve always gotten the bills paid. I’ve always had money for my necessities and I’ve usually had money for things that I want (within reason). There has always been enough.
I wish I had a story to tell you about me tithing at church and then I hit the lottery next week. Nothing that dramatic has ever happened to me and I do not believe in prosperity Christianity at all. However, I have always made ends meet even when money has been tight. I have been blessed and God has always made a way for my household. I have had several financial blessings come my way. I believe that these blessings come from being obedient to God and the financial discipline that tithing brings.
The world we live in is absolutely consumed by greed. People do horrible things in the pursuit of money. The lack of money and the chase for more creates a great deal of anxiety and stress. Tithing is a great practice because it teaches you to prioritize something ahead of your own financial gain. Tithing teaches you to turn to God for your needs instead of your own ability to earn money. Tithing also teaches you discipline which will help your finances in the long run. I believe that tithing has been a blessing in my life in more ways than one.