Tithing is the primary source of financial blessings. There are some simple tithing strateges you can use to make sure you can conitinue to give at the same level and still have money left over.
As I see it there are five levels in tithing.
But first let us look at the spiritual benefits of tithing.
1. Tithing changes your attitude toward money. You can’t give money generously without realising you can’t take it with you. Your attachment to money is relaxed.
2. It changes your attitude toward God. It increases your trust of God. When see with your own eyes how God blesses you and keeps his promises it brings you closer to God.
3. Tithing also changes your love of the church. Where your money goes there goes your heart also. You will love the church more. It will matter more to you.
4. Tithing gives a joy that is amazing. Tithing allows you to help other people in need and that brings a good feeling.
5. Tithing makes you feel good about yourself. You cannot be a selfish person and give generously.
DIPPING YOUR TOE IN THE WATER
1. First there is giving at any level less than 10 percent of your income. I call this the beginner level. This is where most people start in my obsevation. I was treasurer for our church for 4 years.
At this level you are just learning about giving. We are asked to give cheerfully. Most people are not comfortable at a level higher than this. At least in the beginning. Some say that giving less than 10 per cent is not enough. I agree with that up to a point. However we alll have to start somewhere. We do not all have the faith to give more in the begining. We tend to doubt our ability to afford the increase in giving.
TESTING GOD ON TITHING
God asks us to test him on the giving of tithes.
One way to test God is to… gradually increase your giving. Then watch for the financial blessing in return. It will come. But most of us are not aware it. Make yourself aware by looking for it. Rejoice when you see the return. It will be in proportion to the amount you give. If you give double what you gave before your financial blessing will double.
When I first started increasing my giving I did it v-e-r-y gradually. If I strated at $5 per week I increased it to $6 the next week and maintained that level for a month. Next I increased giving to $7 per week. I continued this way for about 6 (six) months. The first time I noticed the return on giving it was a check for $653. I was so excited to see that. I knew that was mine because it was almost exactly half of what I gave. This was proof to me that God does what he promises when it comes to giving and receiving.
My trust level went up a notch or two.
2.My next step was to move gradually toward the 10% tithe level. This is a milesone to be sure. Only about 5% of Americans give at this level. So when you reach this you have really achieved something. Only 10-20% of Christians give at this level. Some denominations expect or even require giving at this level. Most do not expect everyone to give at this rate. Giving is supposed to be voluntary according to my reading of the Bible.
It is inportant to realize that God does not demand 10%. But he really likes it. And… he rewards giving at the 10% level. As I continued my experiment I realized the reward was greater than it was at the lower levels. So it is important to try for the 10% tithe level. In my experience the reward doubles at this level.
So I increased my givimg from $5 to say $20 per week. But this was still not at the 10% level. It took me years but I did get to the 10% level of giving. On the journey upward my igiving doubled again . The rewards doubled also. The ratio of the reward was the same as it was at the first level. But since the total of giving was greater so was the total reward at the end.
MOVE STEP BY STEP TO 10%
So I urge you to move up tp the 10% level as gradually or as quickly as you want. It is not so imprtant how you get there. But I really believe it is important to strive for the “real” tithe level which of course is 10%. At this level the reward ratio doubles. It is like receiving a very nice bonus on your paycheck every six months or so.
GET YOUR BONUS REWARD
Keep moving toward the goal of giving 10%. Stay focused, be disciplined, and perservere. You will get there. You want to stretch your income don’t you? This is one of the best and easiiest ways to do just that. The only way to experience the rewards is to do the little things you need to do. Keep giving at higher and higher levels until you reach the mark. There is no better feeling than to reach this kind of goal. There is joy in giving and… there is the financial result too.
FINANCIAL BLESSINGS LETTER
I received a letter one day that looked like a chain letter but with a twist. It did not ask for any money ! It only asked me to send out 20 copies of the same letter. It said to mail it within 72 hours.and I would receive a financial blessing. I failed to send it out before the deadline.
A few days later I received another copy of the same letter. This time I did send otf the letter. I said a little prayer asking for a big difference in my finances between the days following the first letter and the days following the second letter… if there was such a thing as a financial blessing from God.
The difference was dramatic.. The next time I checked my schedule I was not scheduled to work at all for a whole week. In the 6 weeks after that I had more than the usual number of hours of work. This made me realize that God controls my finances. My employer does not.control my financres. Uncle Sam does not control my finanes This was an amazing experiment that showed exactly who controls our finances.
MOVE TO THE “SILVER” LEVEL
3. To move to the silver level you give more than 10% of your income. This can be done gradually like you may have done before at lower levels of giving.
I once gave at this level (20%) to be precise for six months. After the six months of giving I received a blessing of all of the giving plus 23%. This was fantastic. There is no way to get 23% consistently in the stock market for example.. Cerificates of Deposit pay 1% or less.. Usually much less. All other alternatives have drawbacks..The results with tithing are guaranteed. They are also greater than almost any other “investment”.
THERE IS A “GOLD” LEVEL
4. After you have reached the silver level where can you go next? Next is what I call the “gold” level. What is the “gold” level of giving you ask? It is substatially more than the silver. I would put it at more than double the silver level. It would be something like 50%. This is a big jump. Yes it is. But the benefits take a big jump also. I have not tried this level yet, but I am working on it. If you want to take your giving to the next level this is it. It could be a little more or a little less depending on your situation. It also depends on your comfort level. Keep breaking barriers if you want to reach the top. If you don’t that is o.k. too. You have complete freedom in your giving.
GO FOR THE “PLATINUM” LEVEL?
5. You can go for the top level if you feel comfortable with that. However,do not try this unless you have enough in savings to live off for one year. This is really important. You need to have a real and substantial cushion. You don’t want to spend money you need to live on. Don’t give the money you need for rent or the mortgage. Don’t give money you need for groceries. Be conservative so you do not put yourself in a bind.
This level is giving at a sacrificial level. This is givibg at 100% of your income. If you are not in position to do this…DON”T DO IT. Please heed my warnings.
If you can do this, do it only after experience at the lower levels. This is not the place to start.
If you definitely can afford this, the blessings will be GREAT. You will be amazed by God’s generosity. There is nothing else like it.
It definitely takes a lot of faith to give at this level. You need to trust that God will do what he promises.