Miracle of the Tithe – Improving Financial Future

Butterfly and Me
Butterfly Buddy

Often I tell portions of my experience with tithing. Here is the complete story which covers a period of thirty years…and includes several miracles along the way.

We were living in northern VT where most families were at poverty level. Why were we there? One reason was because I wanted to escape from the materialism I disliked in CT. We became poor beyond my wildest dreams.

Our family included my husband (steadily employed at a bank), myself (running a free used clothes room in church building) and our four children attending a rural grade school. In-laws helped us buy a small house formerly used as a summer camp. The mortgage and car payments precluded eating out at restaurants, buying new clothes (grandparent’s gift got new undies for school), or vacations unless someone offered us a place to stay free. Buying food for six meant cutting a pound of hamburg into three portions. Even our garden refused to yield little in the short growing season except scruffy carrots and a poem I wrote about honking geese flying south overhead. I provided after school care for a friend’s daughter, cooked at the school, and then tried selling religious books and Shaklee vitamins.

These things did little to help our finances. That is when I read or heard about tithing…I don’t remember which. But Bible verses promised: “Bring all the tithes into My storehouse; see if I will not open the windows of heaven and pour you out a blessing”, also “Give and it shall be given to you, heaped up, pressed down and running over.” Did we really have any choice?

We began tithing 10%, most coming from my husband’s earnings. Was there immediate improvement? That would be a miracle, right? Not in God’s economy. Seed sown must be patiently waited for.

So what did happen? My husband was forced into quitting his job, meaning there was no unemployment income. We had to take the money our kids earned helping their grandparents in order to buy milk and put gas in the car. We both had to work part-time temporary jobs, delivering newspapers, stocking shelves, selling phones, and once working three months on third shift an hour’s drive from our house. Did we stop tithing? Thankfully, no.

But I did get some financial wisdom from the marketing and sales tapes my Shaklee supervisor sent. One speaker said to check your financial earnings over the past 5 years. He bet the figures plateaued at the same point each year…he was right. No matter what weird combination of jobs we had held or which state we lived in, we earned exactly $22K each year. EXACTLY! That meant, without some miracle nothing would ever change.

I firmly believe our miracle finally came from insights gained due to tithing…my husband’s parents saw a job listing in their CT paper and offered to let us stay with them. Both of us got decent jobs, and our income finally jumped that plateau for the first time. We got an apartment. Our kids found after-school and summer jobs, too. An inheritance paid off our credit card debt.  My husband got steady employment with the post office. After two bad renters, we let his old bank take back the VT house.

Even after a divorce and living alone in a studio apartment, I kept tithing. My salary doubled in less than ten years. When I was forced to retire, my income doubled for that one year…a miraculous repayment of all I had given away.

Whenever financial doubt creeps in, I remind myself out loud: “I always have enough to meet my needs and give to others.” Then once a month, I get out my checkbook and give back to the Lord.

Location: VT: 1970-1980s
Type: Provision

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5 thoughts on “Miracle of the Tithe – Improving Financial Future

  1. Am not trying to encourage taking liberties within Christendom but one very good example of how our relationship with God stands in the New Testament is the parable of the prodigal son. The younger son understood his rights and asked for his inheritance. He’d erroneously thought that squandering it all had irked his dad so much that being treated as a servant will help him earn his dad’s forgiveness. He was wrong, his dad never stopped loving him in spite of it all. He didn’t need to earn forgiveness by working for it.

    My point? The entire way the tithe is taught in today’s church echoes the same sentiment of the prodigal son. We are encourage to earn our provision and ward off the devourer through tithing. We’ve taught that failure to do so will attract penalties; this is so unchristian and not at all scriptural. We’ve arrived at this notion by taking scriptures completely out of context.

    From a scriptural stand point it is practically impossible to obey the true biblical tithe command. This is because the tithe according to scripture was the tenth part of crops and livestock alone from within the land of Israel alone. And many assume that it was so because money was absent during this time; that is incorrect money was widely available. One could exchange one’s tithe for money and this would have been a little silly if money could be tithed.

    The doctrine of the tithe was intricately woven into the fabric of the Old Testament meaning it could not be practised on its own without the need to keep the entire law. As per the bible there needed to be Levites and priests who were given one of the 3 tithes paid within 6 years in every 7 year cycle. The second tithe was to be consumed during the feasts at Jerusalem and the last was given to the poor. The 7th year was called the year of Sabbath and no tithes were collected that year and the cycle continues in the 8th year which is considered the beginning of another 7 year cycle.

    Hence Paul mentioned that if you choose to obey one aspect of the law you’d have to keep the entire law because breaking one was same as breaking all.

    Long story short, God’s blessings and provisions in this new dispensation is not dependent on our tithing. And when it comes to giving the bible admonishes us of this dispensation to give as we are able and this will be accepted if it has been given willingly and cheerfully. No minimum or maximum is commanded.

    A servant has to earn his keep while a son doesn’t. God bless.

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    • Cannot fault your logic. No one forced me to tithe; my church does not require it. But there is my large salary without a BA degree and other blessings to explain away…if not directly related to obedience. To obey is better than sacrifice.
      Donna Ford

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    • Yes. I understand the logic but miracles are only logical when looking back. The second half of the verse on Open Windows of Blessing also is a promise to rebuke the destroyer so that our blessings are not stolen from us.

      I’m neither financially rich or poor but I know I am provided for and protected when I obey.

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