Do you have enough? Enough food? Enough clothing? Enough money?
You may say, “Enough money? Can you ever have enough? Especially in our current economic situation where gas prices are skyrocketing and the state of (Illinois in our case) is taking more and more in taxes? And the Federal government, too? And food keeps costing more and more? And my kids clothing and education and extras are breaking me?” And I would agree that all those circumstances strip away at what we have (or feel like we don’t have, as the case may be.)
But I have enough. I don’t have extra. Some months we are down to the bottom of the barrel. But we have enough. And this is why.
God is faithful to provide for us, because we are faithful to give to Him.
I learned this concept as a child. When I would get one dollar, I would put ten cents in a jar that we would take to church and put in the offering, and 10 cents in a jar that would go into a savings account. The other eighty cents were mine to do with as I pleased. I didn’t question it, I did it because mom and dad told me that is what I was supposed to do. And I did that faithfully for years.
Until I started managing my own money after I left home. Then I got more and more sporadic about it. I mean, it was my money after all.
But, as with most things that you learn when you are young, you eventually come back to them and re-evaluate them as an adult and we decided that we had to take this tithing thing seriously. After all, God says this in Malachi 3:10:
10 Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.
So, we tested Him. And I can’t begin to tell you how many times I would type the tithe check into Quicken right after the deposit for that week and I KNEW there wouldn’t be enough to pay all the bills by the time I got to the end of the stack (I have an MBA, I am good with numbers, I know how they are supposed to add up and subtract away). But when I would get there, there would always be enough. And other times, even though I had seen that happen multiple times, I would freak out and “hold” the tithe check back to make sure there was enough, but there wouldn’t be.
I am stubborn. And sometimes it takes me awhile to get stuff. Including this. But we got it.
We have to trust that God will provide AND obey what he has asked of us. And when we do that, we always have enough. And many times we have more than enough. It may not look exactly like we want it to, but we are blessed. We have a home to live in that we are able to make the payments on. We have food to eat, even if it isn’t extravagant. We have clothes to wear. And we know that we are living out the knowledge that all we have is God’s, and we are living in obedience that we give to Him what He asks of us, in every way He asks, particularly through our finances. Even when money is tight. Even when it is hard to see how there will be enough.
And there always is…enough.