My youngest son was buying a video game today that cost $20 with the money he earned this week, also $20. I told him he needed to wait and save his money because $2 of the $20 belonged to God. He told me he already tithed once and that he really wanted to spend the money on the video game. I told him that his mom and I tithe every week. He said that tithing once is enough. I said “ok”. And I wondered if I had misrepresented tithing to him… and to you.
God does indeed tell us to test Him in this area of finance. So, did God fail my son? We don’t know yet. But I think it is important to know why God wants us to tithe. He provides an extra 10% when he gives us money (whether through our work, investments, social security, etc.) so that we can return it to Him through our local church. God uses our/His money to pay for people and programs that lead people world-wide into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ. Now, God doesn’t need our money. All the money we have comes from Him and He could finance everything through miracles if He want to do so. But God wants us to know the joy of giving like He does, to know the joy of being a part of His work to unconditionally love people, and to show a watching world His reality and true nature through our loving actions.
I neglected to tell my son all this and I wonder if that might have influenced his decision concerning tithing. After all, my son might not be able to appreciate these blessings if he doesn’t know about them. My son is asleep right now, but tomorrow I hope to be able to talk to him. I want to ask him about why he tithed, did God bless him more than he could receive, and what would have to happen for him to decide to tithe again.
And, I apologize to you if I made tithing sound like a guaranteed money making investment. God has always blessed me for tithing. If it wasn’t for Him I would not have avoided many traffic accidents, I would not have met my beautiful wife, I would not have been able to adopt my two wonderful sons, and I wouldn’t have a job that I like and I think suits me well. These blessings can’t be seen as easily as the four tickets to a kids’ movie that his brother received when his brother tithed, but they are no less real.
I will talk to my son in the morning. I believe God has, or will, bless my son with more than he can receive because of his one week tithe. And, he and I will watch for it.