The place to start with our money is to give God the tithe/10% (Malachi 3:10; Matthew 23:23). Then give alms — that’s when our left hand knows not what the right hand does (Matthew 6:3). After we’ve done that, we should strive to live a reverse tithe: we live on 10% and God get’s 90%. How cool would that be? Now, God doesn’t ask for a reverse tithe, ONLY the tithe (10%) and Offerings — gifts above the tithe.
Here’s the truth of the matter, most people who are rich, sadly, are not generous in giving to the church or charitable institutions. They want to come off as being generous, they give a million dollars — BIG DEAL! — they have given out of their abundance. Remember the widow? She gave all she had and it was two small copper coins.
Oh! and when we give to our own … is that not giving to ourselves. Sheryl and I have never counted what we do for family “giving,” even contributing to our grandchildren’s tuition to a Christian school. Good cause? Worthy cause? Yes! But NOT tithes and offerings. However, so many do. I hear it all the time, “I can’t give the tithe because I’m helping my daughter (who got pregnant out of wedlock and can’t pay the bills or some other similar scenario). Sorry! That’s God’s money and should be given ‘undesignated' without strings attached to God. The tenth is HIS and only His; it belongs to no one else. Putting strings on the tithe is like giving to yourself – it’s not trusting the Leadership who oversees the LORD’s work. If for whatever the reason, the leadership of a Church is unfaithful with what has been entrusted to them, God will take care of them, believe me.
Sheryl and I aren’t at 90% and may never get there (unless one of my books makes it REALLY big), but we are working towards it. Since our marriage in 1975, it has always been our goal to give to what counts for eternity — where no moth or rust can destroy.
As one wise man said, “If you want to see where a person’s priorities are, look at his/her check book registry.” Profound!
This I have found to be true: No one can OUT GIVE God (Luke 6:38).