"The Lord has been so good to us! Listen to what He did..." Anne related a testimony of God's supernatural provision.
Sally listened and smiled.
"We just started tithing six months ago and it's changed everything for us. Not just financially,...." Anne continued to share with Sally how Christ was changing her life and her husband's life.
Tithing is an act of discipline and worship for the believer in Jesus. We talked last time about tithing in Tithing New Testament Style I, reminding us that everything belongs to God and we are simply stewards of His stuff and money. We also talked about investing in our Heavenly bank account. I love tithing because to me, it is like giving a present to the Lord. I just love giving gifts, so tithing is fun for me.
Shopping for the Lord!
Wouldn't it be great to go shopping for the Lord? "I'll take two camels, please, and a yacht! Could you gift wrap that, please?" Of course, shopping for the Lord would be so difficult. He owns everything already. What do you give someone who has everything? That is our question as we examine the act of tithing.
Tithing is a way of giving a gift to the Lord. Worship is the act of giving to the Lord. We give Him a song when we sing. But the real gift is the heart behind the singing of the song. When we sing as an act of worship, we give Him our heart.
Tithing is Worship
We worship by giving gifts of money to the Lord with tithes and offerings.
"Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His Name. Bring an offering and come into His courts," (Psalm 96:8, NIV).
Tithing can be an act of worship for the Christian. When you tithe, give your money as an act of worship. Tell the Lord, "This is for you, Dear Lord," as you are writing out the check. You will find that you are more and more joyful in your giving when you do it as an act of worship.
"Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His Name. Bring an offering and come before Him; worship the Lord in the splendor due His Name," (I Chronicles 16:29, NIV).
Many people have mentioned how much more they enjoy tithing by including it in the worship service. It has gone from being a duty to being a delight.
Of course, Jesus doesn't need our money. He has all He needs. You could even say that He doesn't need our singing when He has a choir of angels. But, Jesus loves our worship through songs or tithing. He loves the heart behind the giving, behind the singing.
Tithing as a Discipline
As we tithe faithfully over the years, we grow in our spiritual disciplines.Tithing, along with prayer, Bible reading, evangelism, worship, church attendance, fellowship, repentance, and giving thanks in all circumstances. Tithing is a spiritual discipline and growing in one discipline helps us to grow in all of our spiritual disciplines.
Tithing, over the years, becomes a habit, a good habit that will reap good fruit. Tithing keeps the Heavenly Bank Account full. As we invest in the Kingdom of God, we can be sure that we can withdraw from this account whenever we need to. All needs will be provided for by the Lord when we put Him first by tithing.
Whether the economy is humming along merrily or crawling sluggishly, financial troubles strike Christians and their families often. Our protection for financial woes is solid money management habits that begin with tithing.
Tithing is the first of many habits, including budgeting, keeping track of your money, delaying gratification, living below your means, and healthy banking habits. These good habits can help a Christian family to thrive no matter what the economy is up to.
"Give and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you," (Luke 6:38, NIV).
Tithing opens our eyes to see the goodness of God because He always comes through for His children. We have a storehouse of testimonies of the goodness our Heavenly Father to pass on to others. This, of course, leads to worship springing up in our hearts.
So, tithing blesses the Lord and also blesses the one who tithes. So, bless the Lord and enjoy the blessing He returns to you.
Merey (Meredith Ludwig Curtis)