TODAY’S SIGNATURE VERSE ••• Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this,” Says the Lord of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it.” (Malachi 3:10 NKJV)
PRAISE & PRAYER PROMPT ••• Yesterday is the first day I’ve done anything remotely normal since Christmas. I went to a ribbon cutting yesterday morning, did some work, baked a cake, and went to my dad and uncle’s 70th birthday dinner last night. It was a pretty busy day after spending the week working from home in sweats and t-shirts! I still have some residual stuffiness and coughing, but I’ve almost finished my medicine, and my voice has finally made a comeback. I’m sure some wouldn’t mind if I lost it for a little longer, but… I’m thankful that the Lord has brought healing. It’s been a rough two weeks. Please keep my mom on your prayer list. She’s still recovering from this mess; she’s a few days behind me.
With that said, I don’t have a creative or insightful illustration to pull from everyday life this week. While I’ve been working, not much happens in my basement office… the most riveting excitement is that I’m finally able to use my 2023 calendars, and I love them! (I have two — one for planning and the other for financial and personal journaling). But several times this week, I’ve had conversations about tithing, so let’s talk about it…
When I was a kid, I always remember watching when my mom sat down to pay the bills. The first check she always wrote was to the church. She was consistent, and it made a lasting impression on me.
Flash forward many years later, when I recommitted my life to Christ and felt convicted about tithing, I was terrified. Mom had set the example, but I didn’t think we could afford to tithe. But after many uncomfortable prayers, I decided we would give $31 a month to Proverbs 31. And no, that was not 10%.
It really comes down to trust and priorities. It’s a powerful part of Scripture — God invites us to test Him. In Malachi 3:10, it says, “‘Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this,’ Says the Lord of hosts, ‘If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it.’”
Now — I’m not going to lie. That verse makes me really uncomfortable because, with the wrong attitude, it turns into a prosperity gospel. If you know me even a little — yeah, I’m not on board with prosperity preaching.
So I want to be very, very clear. We don’t give to get. Let me say that louder for those in the back — WE DON’T GIVE TO GET.
God doesn’t need our money. He wants our trust and obedience. Tithing is an exercise in our dependence on God and a reminder that nothing is really ours anyway. It is His. He makes us managers and stewards; tithing is a step of managing what He has provided and putting it back into His kingdom.
The $31 test was a baby step for us to learn how to trust God. $31 grew, and today, my husband and I consistently tithe 13% of our combined gross income. I don’t say that to brag (Jesus spoke of this in Matthew 6:1-4). I’m telling you all this because, through it, God taught me not to worry. Don’t get me wrong — sometimes I call Wayne and say, “Yeah — don’t spend any money. We’re going to have a tight week.” But the bills are paid, and no one is going hungry in this house. We don’t always have what we want, but God covers our needs.
I know for many, tithing is daunting. I was a single mother for years; I understand how sometimes, there’s nothing left. And in my conversations this week, we also talked about tithing our time and talent in addition to our finances. And I truly think those acts of giving are just as important. After all, we all have a role to play in the church. If you can’t financially give, how can you give or serve in other ways?
Still, I challenge you to look at your budget. How many coffee trips do you make a week? How often do you eat out? Are there ways you could reallocate your spending to invest in God’s kingdom? Even if it’s not the traditional 10%… If you’ll trust Him with your loaves and fish, God specializes in doing a lot with a little! And He’s invited you to let Him show you.
Trust me — it’s an exciting thing to watch!
Today, as you pray, ask the Lord to give you a heart that is generous and trusting. Ask Him to show you how you can give — whether with money, time, talent, or some combination thereof. And ask the Holy Spirit to help you change your mindset, and remember — you’re a manager, not the owner.
SHARING ••• My Grace-Full Life is written by Denise Heidel. You are welcome to share anything I write, but please credit my writing and graphics accordingly. Visit www.MyGraceFullLife.com to read past blogs. Subscribe through my website to have My Grace-Full Life delivered to your email. You can unsubscribe at any time. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the NKJV translation.