Do you give to your local church? Are you a consistent giver? Do you give a percentage or random amounts? How do you feel about giving money to God? Is it a scam or does it really matter?
Usually, when God and money are mentioned in the same sentence people start to feel uncomfortable. Why? We can talk about how much we spent on houses, cars, clothing, or a meal, but for some reason spending on God is taboo. Well, for Jesus the topic wasn’t taboo at all. In fact, Jesus talked about money on a regular basis throughout His ministry.
At the risk of making you uncomfortable, I want to briefly explore the topic of God and your money. What does God really think about your money?
Here are two biblical truths to ponder:
1. Your Money Reflects Your Heart
Matthew 6:21 – For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
One of the easiest ways to measure your priorities is to look at your checkbook or bank statement. Where are you spending your money? Once you find where you are spending your money, you will also find the location of your heart and priorities. This will be your place of interest, passion, and care. There is a direct connection between your money and your heart.
Ever notice when you buy a car or spend a significant amount of money on something, you immediately see it pop up all around you? That is because your financial investment has alerted your heart to pay attention and care about what you bought. The item has always been there, but without a financial investment, there is little interest.
So what would God conclude if He were to review your bank statement? Where does He fall on your priority list? The more you give to the Lord, the more your heart will follow the Lord; the less you give to the Lord, the less your heart will follow. It’s that simple!
2. Your Money Reflects Your Commitment
Luke 21:1-4 – Jesus saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. 2 He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. 3 “I tell you the truth,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. 4 All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”
One of the most common questions asked about giving to the Lord at your local church is “How much?”. Should I give 10 percent (i.e. tithe) like the requirement in the Old Testament? Should I pick my own percentage? Do I need a percentage at all?
When Jesus discussed this topic, He pointed out how a poor widow gave all she had, only a few pennies, but in God’s eyes it was more than everyone else combined. Why? Because God looks at the heart! When we give God our leftovers, we are communicating that He is a leftover. When we give to God off the top, we communicate He is on top.
This is why giving to the Lord needs to be a prayerfully thought-through decision in order to reflect the commitment we claim to have toward God. Let me also suggest that your giving reflects some level of sacrifice (i.e., giving beyond what is comfortable), in order to show your gratitude for all Jesus has sacrificed for you. It may feel scary but give it a shot and watch your faith grow and God show up!
Remember, giving to your local church is much more than supporting an organization or donating to a ministry, it is giving to God and communicating your love, devotion, and commitment to Him.
So does God want your money? Yes! He wants your money because He wants your heart and your money reflects your heart. (c.f. Matthew 22:37)
Note: Pastors and church leaders are not excluded from giving financially to God. In fact, they should set the pace and be a good example of generous sacrificial giving.
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