Wow... who wants to think about tithing? What is tithing? Why is it important?
Tithing is giving of the first and best 10% of your income back to your church or place of worship to better the community/world.
I must confess, I have occasionally wondered what it would be like to spend that money on myself or my family even though we tithe regularly. I have found though that giving is a greater blessing than keeping for myself. I know I would have spent the money and probably forgotten where. Now I know at least the money I chose to give is blessing someone who needs it more than I. The blessings from that are often more abundant than the money itself would have brought.
It is meant to be a showing of your acceptance and believe of Gods love for you and the understanding that he will provide even when you know you don't have enough.
God wants your first and your best. Firstfruits are often mentioned when you hear about tithing. God doesn't want your left overs, he wants to be priority #1 in your life. There's a lot of truth in the idea that your finances reveal what's important to you.
Even if your not religious, tithing or giving to charitable causes on a regular basis some say are important for all of us.
- Giving opens us up to the idea that if we have more to gain we have more to give. It opens our minds to the idea our own value may be more and helps us to work harder to attain it so we can share more.
- It makes us feel valuable and important to our community and we tend to help in other ways as well.
- It makes us aware of the needs of others around us and gives us a better picture of what we ourselves are blessed with.
If you are able, start tithing regularly if you aren't all ready doing so and enjoy the blessings that come from it. If you can't give the whole 10%, give what you can and work your way there. Believe it or not, it's easier to start now when your income is smaller than it is when you make more. It's easier to give $1 when you have $10 than it is to give $1,000 when you have $10,000. If you make it a daily habit now, you won't miss it later and get to reap the rewards all along.
A friend of mine once said her financial adviser told her that when people don't tithe they can't tell you where that 10% of their income went.
I don't think you should to go without food or basic needs, but keep in mind that God does provide and multiply your generosity when given the opportunity, so do what you can to give back.
My challenge for you is to take a look at your checkbook or bank account, however you track your spending, and if you don't you should start- it's amazing when you're not watching it on paper where some of it quickly goes. But check yourself to see what your spending habits say to you, and to God. If your not comfortable with what you see rethink a few things and see what you can do about it. God had a plan for that 10%... let him use it!
I also want to note that if you give, give from your heart. Don't do it because it's what you're supposed to do, because that is what's expected of you or because you think your giving will come back to you ten fold. If you give your spouse brings you some flowers and tells you that he just happened to notice them in the store and it was "No big deal.", the gift looses it's heartfelt value quickly. God wants our hearts more than our money too. Keep that in mind with your giving.
I will likely continue to add ways that we can give to God's service, not instead of tithing, but above and beyond it to further show our love to him and those around us.