Spiritual Disciplines for Tough Times 5

Linda and I sent our tithing check this week. I wish I could say it was easy. I thought of the uncertainty in our future and how we might need to save the money in case we needed it. I wrestled with the desire to take care of my family and the desire to obey and trust God. I argued that we could send it later, after all this uncertainty ended.

It dawned on me that my choice was deeper than a few dollars. It was really a choice between trusting myself and trusting God for the next season. In the end, we had no choice other than to obey God and trust Him. Not easy, but I feel secure in His hands.

This series is exploring spiritual disciplines and is drawn from Liberty 201 class. A section is on tithing, so I am not skipping it. Now, more than ever, we need to put our trust in God. Finances are where the “rubber meets the road.” Here are 8 reasons from God’s Word for tithing:

1. Because God commanded it.
“A tenth of all you produce is the Lord’s, and it is Holy.”Lev 27:30
2. Because Jesus commended it.
“Yes, you should tithe, and you shouldn’t leave the more important things undone either.” Matt 23:23
3. Tithing demonstrates that God is first in my life.
“The purpose of tithing is to teach you to always put God in first place in your life” Dt 14:23 (LB)
4. Tithing reminds me that all I have was given to me by God.
“Always remember that it is the Lord your God who gives you the ability to produce wealth.”Dt 8:18
5. Tithing expresses my gratitude.
“How can I repay the Lord for all His goodness to me?” Ps 116:12
“Each of you should bring a gift in proportion to the way the Lord your God has blessed you.” Dt 16:17
6. God says that refusing to tithe is stealing from Him!
“God says “Will a man rob God?” Yet you are robbing me! But you ask “How do we rob you?” God says “In tithes and offerings…” Bring your whole tithe into My house.” Mal 3:8-10
7. Tithing gives God a chance to prove He exists and wants to bless you!
“Bring your whole tithe into my storehouse. Test me in this says the Lord and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you won’t have room enough for it! I will prevent the pests from devouring your crops and the vines in your fields will be protected from plagues.” Mal 3:10
8. Tithing proves that I love God.
(Jesus) “If you really love me, do what I command.” Jn 14:15
“…I want you to be leaders also in the spirit of cheerful giving…This is one way to prove that your love is real, that it goes beyond mere words.” 2 Cor 8:7b-8 (LB)

Tithing “buys” a sense of security and faith in God that is priceless. Now, more than ever, we all need trust in Him.
I also pray that LCC is strong enough financially to bless our community in the coming months. There will be smaller ministries and community needs that we can bless if we are obedient now.

Each of us must decide to give willingly (Each one should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under pressure.” 2 Cor 9:7a), cheerfully (“…For God loves a cheerful giver!” 2 Cor 9:7), and sacrificially (“They gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service…” 2 Cor 9:6).

How do we give in this time of online church? Most LCCers already give online, but for those of you who give through the offering boxes here are your options:
• Mail a check to PO Box 130 Bealeton, VA 22712
• Stop by the building and put your check in the offering box
• Use the tith.ly app. Search for it on your phone. If you need help, let me know.
• Give using PayPal. Click on the “donate” button at https://www.positivelifechange.org/contact

Giving teaches us to put God first in our lives (Dt. 14:23). Now, more than ever, each of us needs to put God first and trust Him for our future. Encourage one another by sharing stories in the comments about how God has demonstrated His faithfulness in finances as you obey Him in tithing.

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