Hello, and welcome back.
Today I wanted to share my fourth Resolution for a Blessed 2011.
It is to Give More.
Some of you may be asking, “What are you talking about Sam? Giving more of your time? Talent?”
No. I’m talking about giving more of my money.
Yes, money – moolah, bread, dough, cash, greenbacks, dead presidents.
Now before you hit the back button, let me say first of all that this is my promise to God. I’m not saying that you have to do this.
I do believe, however, that the Bible teaches us that there is a promise that awaits those who can give of their finances to God.
Luke 6:38 (King James Version)
Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.
With the tough economy, I’m the first to admit that I wasn’t as generous when the offering plates went by last year. Based on that last scripture, perhaps that was the reason my dollar didn’t stretch as much as I had hoped it would.
I’ve made a promise to God to be the one who will demonstrate his faith in God’s promises this year, specifically in my finances.
I also want to increase my tithe this year also. The tithe, as most of you know, is the tenth of our income that God asks us for. In Malachi it states:
Malachi 3:10-11 (King James Version)
10Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
11And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts.
Since I was a kid, I’ve always been taught to give my tithes to God.
Notice I said “give my tithes to God” and not to the church. There is a big distinction there. If I give to the church, then it becomes more of a payment, almost like a bill.
I give my tithes to God – via the church offering. In my heart, I know that I’m giving it as an offering to my God. I see it that way, and more importantly, God sees it that way.
What the church does with my offering doesn’t matter to me, because I didn’t give it to the church. I gave it to God.
Recently, with the current economic downturn, I have to admit, I’ve been tempted to not give my tithe, especially in a month when I know there is a big bill that will show up at the end of the month. My calculations tell me that if I give my 10%, I won’t have enough to pay that bill.
It’s in those times when I’m tempted to save my tithe that I’m reminded of verse 11 of the third chapter of Malachi. It reads:
And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts.
Here God states that when the devourer comes in to try and destroy what belongs to us, He himself will rebuke him. He doesn’t say that he will send an angel or a prophet or a minister or that He will teach us how to rebuke the devourer. He says that He Himself will do the rebuking.
It’s like God telling the enemy, “Oh no you don’t! You won’t touch this son of mine. He is a one of my children who has demonstrated with his life that he trusts me. If you want to touch him or anything that belongs to him, you’re going to have to go through me first, and you don’t want some of this!”
And I can honestly say that God has been faithful to His Word. My bills have always been paid. Even when my calculations say there won’t be enough at the end of the month, God always comes through with the necessary finances.
I believe it’s because I have continued to obey his Word in the area of tithing.
So this new year, I want to give even more. I want to sow more seed into the Kingdom, knowing that I can never out-give God. The more I give to Him, the more he will bless me.
Like I said, this is my promise to God, but if you will trust Him with your finances, I know God will pour down blessings that you won’t be able to contain.
So will you make this promise also? Will you give more this year?
Come on back tomorrow for my fifth Resolution for a Blessed 2011.