Back to Basics Finances Day 1

“Money, money, how we love thee how we need you more and more.”  Ah, money….those pretty little green pieces of paper cloth that we all know and love.  Some of us have a lot, and some not so much, but we have it.  We even have money in metal!  Good old quarters, dimes, nickels, and pennies, and let’s not forget about 50 cent pieces, silver dollars…sigh…money….We do love our money, don’t we?  Come on, be honest with yourselves here!  We, especially here in America, covet money.  We put people who have a lot on pedestals for us all to see.  Don’t believe me?  How many rich people can you name right now?  Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, actors, sports figures?  Now, how many poor people can you name…See, money in today’s world is important.  It is what defines separates the haves from the have nots.  So, is money bad?  Let’s dive into God’s Word and see.

Money is a root of all kinds of evil.

Oops!  That is not so good, is it?  We all know that scripture, and have heard it repeatedly from pastors of all walks of life, but is it true?  Nope!  How do I know? You ask?  Because this is the most misquoted verse of all scriptures.  Let’s read it in its entirety:

1 Timothy 6:10 “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. …” 

Aha!  Now that makes more sense!  Money itself, is not evil, but the love of money is.  We could dive into a theological discussion here on this scripture, but I am not going to.  Instead, we are going to look at the money we have, and how we spend it.

We need money today.  We need it for food, shelter, clothing, and many other things.  God also asks us for money.  Why shouldn’t He?  It all belongs to Him, doesn’t it?  He provided us with the job that brings money in, the blessing of money from someone else originated from God, so it’s only natural that He wants us to give some back to Him.  He doesn’t ask for much, unlike the governments, He only asks for 10%, our tithe.

Leviticus 27:30   “‘A tithe of everything from the land, whether grain from the soil or fruit from the trees, belongs to the Lord; it is holy to the Lord.”

That seems easy enough, doesn’t it.  Just give God 10%.  But then the second part of Timothy comes into play:

1 Timothy 6:10  “Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.”

Oops.  Ok, have I lost you here?  Let me explain what I mean.  Back to tithing, how much does God ask us to tithe?  It’s 10%, but 10% of what?  Is it ten percent of the gross amount, the net amount, or after the bills are paid?  Is it after we buy that cute outfit, or killer pair of shoes first, after our vacation?  If you answered yes to any of the above, we have a long road ahead of us.  God wants 10% of our first fruits.  That means if you gross $10, He wants $1.  Not after you pay or buy everything else, but first.  I know it’s not easy, but there is something we all need to understand.  God does not need our money.  He owns everything, so He doesn’t need it.  Then, why does He want it if He doesn’t need it?  To teach us.  To show us that He is in control of everything including our finances.  He is the Great I Am, not the Great I Need.  He wants us to fully rely on Him for everything.  By tithing, you are honoring God with, for some of us, is the most important thing in our lives.

I have heard some people say, “If you tithe to God, He will give you more money in return.”.  He might, but that is not the way He wants you to tithe.  He wants you to tithe with the right attitude.  He wants you to be a joyful giver with no thoughts on how He is going to give back to you.

What if you don’t have any money?  What if you are married to someone who does not believe in God, or does not believe in tithing?  Should you tithe anyway?  Yes.  You can tithe with other things besides money, you can tithe your time, your love, anything that God lays on your heart to tithe.

Let me tell you something of my own experience with tithing various things to God and how it worked out for me.  When I was working, I always thought to myself, I will tithe this week IF (insert any if here you like, if I have enough for bills, if that book I want isn’t here yet, if that pair of shoes isn’t on sale) if, if if.  Was God blessing me?  Yes, but there was something in my Spirit that was not at peace.  When I started to tithe, I started with 10% of the net after bills, and God blessed me.  Then it was 10% before bills, and still He blessed me.  I finally started to tithe the gross, and BOY!  Did He bless me!  Sometimes with money, yes, but mostly in other ways.  I would love to go into how He did and what, but it’s personal for each person.  I then tried to outbless God with my tithing, and I couldn’t do it!  No matter how much I blessed Him, He blessed me more!  My spirit was at peace, and was rejoicing over it all!

I no longer work, but I still tithe my time and anything else God asks of me.  Tithing is so important to me and to God.  He does not command us to tithe, but why would you hold back something from God that is His in the first place?

So for day one on back to basics money is tithing.

Ask yourself these questions, and be honest!  We cannot change what we do not acknowledge:

1)      Do I tithe to God?  If so, out of what bounty am I tithing?  Over what is left, or out of my abundance.

2)      If I don’t tithe, why?  What is holding me back?

3)      If you cannot tithe money, in what other ways can I tithe?  Where would God see me tithe?

Tithing is like  a prayer to God, saying thank you to Him for all He has given you.  You probably won’t get rich when you tithe, but you will be blessed and at peace in your heart.  So let’s start tithing and see what God does with it!

Created for the Gift of the Home Group by K.D.

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