“Remember: A stingy planter gets a stingy crop; a lavish planter gets a lavish crop. I want each of you to take plenty of time to think it over and make up your own mind what you will give. That will protect you against sob stories and arm-twisting. God loves it when the giver delights in the giving.” – 2 Corinthians 9:6-7 MSG
I’m going to be honest with you. I used to get really defensive about the subject of tithing and giving. I grew up in a stricter church, where every Sunday, our pastor would quote Malachi 3:8 about how we were robbing God of our tithes and offerings. While he wasn’t wrong, the constant reminder of Christian obligation didn’t leave me with a full understanding of the principle of tithing and sent my spiritually immature self on a rebellion from giving.
As I got older and started my career and adulthood, my relationship with tithing hadn’t changed much. I still thought of my money as my own, something I had worked hard for and deserved to keep, and always told myself I’d give more when I had more.
Then I had a heart to heart with my sister about the importance of giving, and how it’s made a positive impact on her family and their financial contentment. She made me realize that I didn’t have to be legalistic about tithing each month. Jesus’ death on the cross took the sting out of the law and turned it towards grace. I could look at giving as something I was blessed to do – not something I had to do.
After our conversation, I challenged myself to give 5% of my paycheck for a few months. After that time, I could then gauge whether or not I felt the sting of a lower bank balance or missed my money at the end of every month.
The first few weeks felt like a miracle. I wasn’t stressed about money. In fact, at the end of the month, I had more money in my account than usual. After a few months, I upped my tithes to 10% to see if things would be different.
It’s now five years later, and I haven’t looked back since.
I’m not saying you’re guaranteed to come out financially free if you choose to tithe. I’m not saying you will always have extra money leftover at the end of the month. But something happens in your life when you open your hands and all you have to God and allow Him to move. It doesn’t make sense on paper, but just like Jesus feeding the 5,000, God multiplies what we bring to Him as an offering, whether for us or for others.
On top of that, giving brings joy and contentment. Every time you write that monthly check or add your online contribution, you recognize just how much God has given you and become more content with what you already have.
I don’t know what your relationship with tithes and offerings are. I don’t know if you give now or plan to give in the future. All I know is what I’ve read in the Bible and what I’ve experienced personally.
Tithing is less about a financial change and more about a heart change.
It’s less about giving God your money and more about giving Him your heart.
Most of all, tithing is not a transaction – it’s a symbol of trust. It’s a trust that says, even when you can’t make sense of how giving can work with your finances, you believe the Lord will meet all your needs and bless the offerings you give Him.
Challenge: Commit to giving a set amount each month for the next 90 days. Each time you give, pray that God would bless your offering and thank Him for the finances you’ve been blessed with. After 3 months, look back and reflect on all God has done in your life at that time.
Do you have a story about how God has moved in your life through tithing? We'd love to invite you to share your stories with our team at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would be honored to anonymously share these stories in the future through our Wheatful Wednesday devotionals.