Have you noticed the price of eggs?
How about the price of milk?
Don’t even get me started on the price of chocolate! (Have you heard there may be chocolate shortages over the holidays? This is a major cause of concern in my world.)
Lately, a trip to the grocery store (or any story) can be a traumatic event. The prices are so high it’s like you are being robbed.
They call it inflation. It’s affecting all of us.
If you’re a parent doing back-to-school shopping, I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you about it. If you’re like most people, the rising costs have you reevaluating how you distribute your income. You’re probably looking for ways to save, areas to cut back, and even some costs to eliminate.
We are doing all of these things.
But here is one thing that will always be a priority in our budget: Tithing.
I strongly encourage you to make the same commitment.
Even during times of inflation, even in a recession, as followers of Christ, we need to continue faithfully obeying God’s Word and give 10% of our income back to God.
Well, God told us to. Malachi 3:8-12 says,
“Will man rob God? Yet you are robbing me.
But you say, ‘How have we robbed you?’
‘In your tithes and contributions.
You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing me, the whole nation of you.
Bring the full tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house.
And thereby put me to the test, says the Lord of hosts, if I will not open the windows of heaven for you and pour down for you a blessing until there is no more need.
I will rebuke the devourer for you, so that it will not destroy the fruits of your soil, and your vine in the field shall not fail to bear, says the Lord of hosts.
Then all nations will call you blessed, for you will be a land of delight,’ says the Lord of hosts.”
Three things to notice in these verses:
1. God tells us to give Him all of our tithe: 10% of our income.
2. God says He will bless those who continue to put Him first in their finances. (I don’t know about you, but I need God’s blessing on my finances!)
3. God says there is a curse on the finances of those who do not tithe and put Him first in their finances.
Whoa!! The last thing any of us need right now is our finances to be cursed.
So keep paying your tithe. Don’t believe the lie that cutting back on tithe is a way to save money. It isn’t. If it helps you resist temptation, put your tithe on auto-pay each week or month.
Instead, believe what the Bible says about tithing, put God first in your life and your finances, and trust God to provide the rest of your needs.
Here’s another commitment we are making: Don’t cut back on your giving to missions or other ministries.
When we look at our budget, we are finding other ways to sacrifice because, above all else, the kingdom of God must advance! Just as we are experiencing rising costs and financial pressures, missionaries and ministries are paying these prices, too! If they are going to keep doing what God has called them to do, they need people to keep supporting them.
This is why as we’ve been looking at our personal finances, we are following the Holy Spirit’s guidance at continuing not only our tithing and our giving. We trust that God’s principles will hold true: as we invest in His kingdom, He will provide for our needs.
"The point is this: whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.
Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work…
He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness.
You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God." (2 Corinthians 9:6-9 and 10-11)
Standing on the truth of God’s Word, I encourage you to do what we are doing:
Keep giving to advance the kingdom of God.
Ask the Holy Spirit for His blessing on your finances and for wisdom for areas you can save money and spend wisely.
Remember: while the economy will rise and fall and stock markets will go up and down, eternity is forever. The wisest investment we can make is investing in the kingdom of God.
When we are faithful to God, we can trust Him to be faithful to us.
So keep doing the right thing—no matter how much they charge for eggs!
Adessa Holden is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God specializing in Women's Ministry. Together with her brother, Jamie, they manage 4One Ministries and travel the East Coast speaking, holding conferences, and producing Men's and Women's resources that provide practical Biblical teaching for everyday life.
When asked about herself, she'll tell you "I'm a women's minister, a sister, and a daughter. I love to laugh and spend time with people. My favorite things are chocolate, the ocean, sandals and white capris, anything purple, summertime and riding in the car listening to music. It is my absolute honor and privilege to serve Jesus and women through this ministry."