Giving and Getting

From the early days of our children’s lives, we wanted to instill in them an attitude of giving.  Of course, it is never too early to begin these things.  We’ve always told them that when we give offerings in church we are giving to Jesus and that He is pleased with our offerings.
Once we were visiting a church where they kept a box on a table in the back for offerings.  After the service, we instructed the children to put the money into the box.  Then we lingered for a while chatting with several people.  When we left, my son looked at the table in the back with astonishment and said, “What happened to the box?  Somebody took the box.”  My daughter quickly responded; “that man took it.”  My son agreed and said, “Yes, he will take the money and throw it into the air, and Jesus will catch it from up there in heaven.”
What is our concept of money and giving?  Generally, Christians give such a small percentage, that the situation is alarming.  Jesus said, “Give, and it will be given to you.  A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap.  For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you (Luke 6:38).  Could it be that God has “limited” his measure because of our giving habits?  We often point to many reasons for our financial woes. All the while, part of the fault may be with our own giving habits.
A “poverty mentality” has gripped many believers.  Their concept of money and wealth has been tainted by their own deeds (or the lack of it).  Proverbs says, “A generous man will himself be blessed, for he shares his food with the poor” (Pr. 22:9).  We cannot expect God’s blessings without a giving heart.  Too many have the misconception that they don’t have enough, so they won’t give, when their lack of giving could be one of the reasons for their financial burdens.
Christians will do well to adopt a simple, Biblical financial plan for their lives that begins with giving.  Take all the income you receive whether weekly or monthly, and give 10% as tithe to your local church where you attend every Sunday. Then take another 10% and put into a long-term savings that you will not touch.  That gives you 80% to live on.  Of course, the 80% should include whatever taxes you owe to the government, and sufficient gifts to the poor.  These principles are simple, yet Biblical.
Am I guaranteeing God’s blessings if you follow this plan? Not a guarantee from me, just Jesus’ words: “Give and it will be given to you….”
What do you think?
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