“Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.”2 Corinthians 9:7
When I was a little boy, I was attracted to the dollar bill. I thought of ways to make it or ask for it, and once I even badgered a missionary to put money in my piggy bank. I learned early that money bought things, and if I could make money, then I could buy things. We did not have the internet in those days, but we did have catalogs filled with pictures of all kinds of things. I seemed to have a hole in my pocket when it came to retaining money, and I am thankful Rebekah has taken over the finances at this point or we might be in the poor house.
I learned to cut grass at a young age, as this was a way I could make some cold hard cash. I cut my neighbor’s lawn, and he was kind enough to give me his lawnmower so I could hustle and cut more lawns. I would do most anything to make money, and my aunt, who worked at Call-A-Teen, would give some side jobs. I had no real needs as I was well taken care of, but I had a wish list that would rival the letters received at the North Pole. I was into making money, but as a boy, my mom taught me a life-changing principal about money that would shape me for the rest of my life.
I remember back to the first money I ever made, and I was proud to count out the dollar bills I had earned. I also remember my mom telling me that I was to give a tithe (a tenth) of my earnings to the Lord. I did not understand why I was supposed to give God 10 percent, but my mom explained to me that it was all God’s money and He gave me the opportunity and resources to make the money in the first place. She reminded me that God provided the lawnmower and the physical strength to cut the grass. At first, this was hard to understand, but I soon learned that giving my tithe was in obedience to God.
Throughout my young life, whenever I made some money, I learned to give God ten percent right off of the top. Eventually, this became quite natural to me, and I was glad to put my money in the offering plate. I cannot begin to tell how God has provided for me in all my years on this earth, and I am grateful for His provision. I know He is the giver of all things, and I know He is the One who gives me my job and the ability to work. I am grateful to give to God what is already His, and I pray that my heart will always remain cheerful in giving to Him.
How are you doing in this area? Do you cheerfully give to God or do you have “alligator arms” as the plate passes by you? Are you faithful in giving of the tithe or do you rob God of what is His? Do you give grudgingly or do you give cheerfully? May God help us to remember He is our provider, and may we put Him first in our giving. God does not need our money as He owns all things, but He gives us the free will to give back to Him. May we be cheerful givers!
Stay in the Fight!