My fourth resolution is my tithe before wants. Everyone of you know how I feel about tithing. I believe in it and I give my tithe not out of a feeling of I must but out of a feeling of I want to. I am a cheerful giver. When I was first a believer I was taught to tithe and the reason for it and I got it! How could I not give him everything when he gave me everything?
Only I have confession to make. I have absolutely no problem tithing my money. I give tithes and then some, I give offerings and plenty of them but I don’t always give the tithes of all of my life. Remember tithe is not just money. That would be easy for me to give I’m not a control freak about the tithe. I am a control freak about the 80% I live on I’ll admit that. What I don’t always give is my time and talent. Sometimes, I tithe my time to the Internet, sometimes to a good book, sometimes I tithe my time to sleep, sometimes I tithe my time to a good friend who I want to share a tea and gossip with and many times I tithe my time to chores and work.
I’ve become really good at fooling myself. I say, “My whole life is a tithe, I work for the church.” Not true, the time I work for the church is service to others and not about my personal relationship with the Lord. Sometimes I feel like Jesus is speaking to me when he said to the disciples in the garden of Gethsemane, “Could you not have kept watch with me an hour?” I am so so sorry at the time and I try to do better but just like the disciples I go back to the slumber of my life. I don’t neglect my prayer life, don’t get me wrong. I just don’t take the challenges that come my way necessarily as first fruits but rather I take them for granted and sometimes give what is leftover.
This year, I’m striving to stay awake. Take an assessment of your life. Do you tithe? Money? Time? Talent? Or do you give the leftovers? It will determine your life’s blessings. Wisdom comes from the Lord. God knows I need more wisdom, yet the word tells us she cries in the street. I want to still her cries this year and I want to sit at her feet. That demands my attention and the best of me, not what is left over.