My first year results with tithing: a personal case study

My case study

I was hesitant to write this post.

Why?

It’s not something you read or hear. The fact is, when most people give their testimonies about tithing it’s usually with an instantaneous and positive ending. Most ministries tell how the person who gave received a 400% increase in a matter of months.

Last year…that was NOT the case with me.

 Preface

On a Sunday in November of 2012 I asked God what would I need to do to get out of the financial rut I was in. I said,

“Lord, I love you but I am in a rut and I don’t know what to do to get out. What is it?”

And the idea popped into my mind: start tithing. I felt this assurance that was what I needed to do. So I decided that 2013 would be the year to do my tithing experiment. I made a promise that no matter what happened I would keep tithing.

With this experiment I decided to document my giving and and significant experiences in the year. That way I would be able to share my “successes” with those following. That way when when TBN or CBN decided to broadcast my riveting story (cause God was obviously going to miraculously prosper me instantaneously) I could be honest with the audience.

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After You Give Your Tithes Follow the Virgin

The Virgin Mary

The Christmas season is upon us. As a result, everyone turns their attention to a manger, a virgin mother, and a Baby that changed the world. As much as I am indebted to that Baby I wanted to focus on the mother–the Virgin Mary.

I wanted to talk about her faith actually.

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Why You Are Already Prosperous

Prosperity

I’m starting to understand what I already am in Christ:

  • I’m holy
  • I’m righteous
  • I’m more than a conqueror
  • I’m complete in Him
  • I’m anointed
  • I’m accepted in the Beloved

…and etc.

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Why Knowing The Power of the Seed is Important When Tithing

 Seeds and tithing

 

I’m learning that the attitude in giving is just as important as the giving itself. God is concerned THAT we give but also HOW we give. He loves cheerful givers:

Let each one [give] as he has made up his own mind and purposed in his heart, not reluctantly or sorrowfully or under compulsion, for God loves (He takes pleasure in, prizes above other things, and is unwilling to abandon or to do without) a cheerful (joyous, “prompt to do it”) giver [whose heart is in his giving].” (2 Corinthians 9:7 AMP)

He absolutely loves them.

In the same way He loves people of faith. People who expect Him to do what He said He would do. And the best way to love giving and have faith in it is to see it as a seed investment.

Most people hear the term of “seed” in giving and immediately attribute it to televangelists asking for money; not realizing its truth and power

Paul when talking about giving and the rewards of it says:

“Now he that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness;)” (2 Corinthians 9:10 KJV)
Tithing is nothing but the sowing of seed. That’s why with tithing we can’t expect instantaneous results. It takes time.
But…know that it is time well spent. Why? Because there’s tremendous power in a seed!

Power of a seed

Everything began in the form of a seed:

  • Adam was a seed for the human race.
  • The Nation of Israel is called the seed of Abraham.
  • Even Jesus is called the seed of of David.

This is why satan works so hard to discourage giving and tithing. He understands the harvest ahead.

This is also why NO MATTER WHAT is going on we have to look at God as the Source and the abundant Supply. Regardless, of what is going on there is only ONE “Lord of the Harvest.”

Again: no matter what happens KEEP SOWING.

Keep giving.

Keep believing.

Keep confessing.

As Rick Renner points out, the Greek word used for sowing depicts a continual process:

The Greek tense does not denote a single, one-time sowing; rather, it pictures a person who continually, habitually sows. Therefore, it could be translated, “Whatsoever a man sows, sows, sows, and sows – and keeps on habitually sowing and sowing and sowing….” In other words, this describes a constant, steady, perpetual sowing of seed. And if you sow this seed steadily and faithfully, God’s promise is that you will reap a harvest. The word for “reap” is in the same Greek tense, meaning that it could be translated, “You will reap, reap, reap, and reap – and keep on habitually reaping and reap­ing and reaping.”

The reason most people walked away disgusted and scoffing at this promise is that they never really put it to the test! They sowed once and waited for a harvest. When nothing happened, they threw up their arms and said it didn’t work. But those who keep on habitually sowing and sowing and sowing as a manner of lifestyle are the ones who eventually reap and reap and reap as the mani­fold blessings of God come pouring back into their lives.

The level at which you sow determines the level you will reap. Sow a little, and you’ll reap a little. Sow a lot, and you’ll reap a lot. Sow inconsistently, and you’ll reap inconsistently. Sow regu­larly, and you will reap regularly.

Your harvest is on it’s way, don’t be deceived into thinking otherwise!

Do you believe in the power of a seed?

The One Thing That Cause Tithing to Fail

fail

 

The more I practice tithing the more I realize how much of a blessing it is. No, it’s not a lottery ticket; but I have seen doors open and favor increased in my life. Frankly, I believe I’m standing under a open heaven.

But there is one thing that WILL cause your tithing to fail; and fail miserably.

But before I share what will cause tithing to fail I want to share a principle that will cause tithing to succeed beyond your wildest dreams. For the most part this principle has been a secret to the masses. For years this secret principle was in my face but I was too oblivious to it. In fact, most of the world is oblivious to it.

It’s so simple that most people just cast it aside.

But if you think you’re ready for this secret…keep reading.

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Should I Pay My Tithes or Save My Money?

Do I pay tithes or my savings

 

Now if you’re living in that state of abundance this is a ridiculous question. You could obviously do both. You can honor God with your tithes, sock up a designated amount for savings, pay your bills, and keep a discretionary amount for yourself. It’s rather simple.

On the other hand, if you’re struggling financially this is a question that keeps you up at night.

It is a legitimate concern because God watches our giving AND He is concerned about our saving (and investing…debt management…and overall stewardship). When the Bible talks about saving a few things are said:

 “A wise man thinks ahead; a fool doesn’t, and even brags about it!” (Proverbs 13:16 The Living Bible)

There is desirable treasure, and oil in the dwelling of the wise, but a foolish man squanders it.” (Proverbs 21:20 NKJV)

“The prudent sees the evil and hides himself, but the naive go on, and are punished for it.” (Proverbs 22:3 NASB)
“Through wisdom is an house builded; and by understanding it is established: And by knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches.” (Proverbs 24:3-4 KJV)
“So Mike, how does this help me? I know I’m supposed to be saving but it’s hard to do that and tithe!”
My suggestion: do both.
Now obviously you may not be able to save 20%-30%. I understand that. But what if you started off saving something as small as…say…1%. The main benefit of tithing during hard times is that it teaches discipline. I suggest saving 1% because as God begins to prosper you AND you begin to prosper you… you can increase that amount. Also, the discipline and spiritual strength of character you learn from tithing will teach you NOT to be such a spendthrift. In other words, you won’t be stupid:

“Stupid people spend their money as fast as they get it.” Proverbs 21:20 (TEV)

But what do you think, is it possible? Can the average person really do both?

Why I Agree With Pat Robertson on Tithing

Pat Robertson made recent headlines with his comments on tithing. See the video here:

I don’t necessarily agree that we who tithe are exempt from illness, disease, or hardship. Quite the contrary it is possible to tithe  and see things get worse. Tithing is not a lottery ticket…don’t expect God to show up on your doorstep with a $10,000,000 check!

I never thought I’d be agreeing with Robertson because he’s been quite controversial over the years. Nevertheless, I do agree with him about tithing through hard times.

I don’t think my answer would have been quite the same…but it would have been similar.

Watch the video and tell me: what would your answer have been?

Your thoughts…