To Tithe or Not To Tithe…That Should Not be the Question!
The weather in the A is crazy, huh? It’s either tropical and raining or frigid and dry…Today is one of the colder days…somewhere in the 20s…that just ain’t right….
Anyway, let me get on task. So have you made your resolutions yet? As I said in my last post, it takes me the whole month of January to come up with suitable resolutions or more appropriately, goals. Some of my goals for the year will be concentrated on my finances. It’s an area I would rather not think about actually. This comes from my uneasiness about numbers in general. I think it’s just how I’m wired. I don’t know many journalists who are good with numbers. But alas, I’m 35 on the way to 36, and I still haven’t snagged a baller…so I guess I need to get my Plan B in gear.
But I must say I’m proud of the fact that I have been tithing since I got my first job in the eighth grade. There have been times due to irresponsibility and fear that I have missed tithing a paycheck from time to time, but for the most part, I’m a faithful tither. To tithe is to give ten percent of your income to the church. (One cannot assume that everyone knows what tithing means!) My father drilled it in me that if you give to the Lord what is due Him, He, in turn, will make sure that what is left is more than enough to provide for your needs. There is even a verse that describes this principle.
Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.
My father actually preached on this verse last Sunday. And this verse has been proven true in my life over and over again. A few years ago, I was going through a dark phase in my life. I was in between career jobs if you know what I mean. I was working at a department store in the mean time trying to make ends meet, but inevitably, someone would move the ends, ha, ha! My roommate had moved out leaving me with half of the money I needed to pay for my mortgage. My car had broken down, and I didn’t have the money to fix it. And right after I got the job at the department store, the department store shut down. I was so depressed I swear I didn’t open any bills for a few months. But during that time, nothing was turned off, and nobody came to get anything. I would like to think that my years of tithing had something to do with how the Lord took care of me. And when I finally had the courage to open my bills again, the Lord granted me favor with the bill collectors.
My absolute favorite author Catherine Marshall wrote about her experience with tithing in her book Something More. (How a white woman who could have been a contemporary of my grandmother became my absolute favorite author is a mystery to me, but I just adore her work. FYI – Her work is archived at Agnes Scott College in Decatur. I once spent my birthday reviewing her work at the Agnes Scott College library. Yes, I am quite obsessed…) Anyway, Catherine Marshall’s husband Peter Marshall suddenly died leaving Catherine, who was a housewife, and their young son to fend for themselves. In fact, they had to live off of $171 a month, according to the book. But Catherine decided to even tithe that. And the Lord took care of her. He told her that she was to “pick up [her] pen and edit and write.” Catherine became a best-selling author and has influenced generations with her work. The fact that a black woman with curly red dreads and who knows how to slow wine reads her work is a testament to that. (It’s sooo cold outside that I’m dreaming of being in Jamaica as I sit at my desk.)
So what’s up? Do you tithe? Has God proven to you that He will take care of you if you put Him first? Let me know…
P.S. Since Jamaica is on my mind, I have posted a video of one of my favorite Bob Marley songs. It reminds me of watching my dad wash his car on hot Saturday mornings…