goodsenseloIt’s my money. I worked hard for it and I’m going to choose to do what I want with it.

I know you have a hard time believing that it’s God’s money in the first place. That it was God who gave you the ability to do whatever you do to earn that money. As you may or may not know, I was right there with you. I felt the same way. In fact, there was a long time that I didn’t Tithe. So when I say I know where you’re coming from, I really do.

What I don’t think we ever think about is the fact that God also decided that you should be born to parents who live in this part of the world. He could have chosen for you to be born in Africa or Russia, but He chose for you to be born here. Could it be (and I think it is) that one of the reasons God chose for you to live and move and have your being here is because He wanted you to have the money that you have so you could do great things for God with that money?

So really, if you stop to think about it. The fact that you even have the money that you have is all because of God. The fact that you live in a very blessed country, when compared to most of the world is because God trusted you to be a good steward of His money.

Giving is one of the only tangible ways we can demonstrate our Love for God. Remember this verse we’ve talked about a lot lately, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Rom. 5:8) And everyone’s favorite Bible verse, John 3:16, ” For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

God demonstrated His love for us by giving His only son, is it really that much of Him to ask us to give 10% of everything we make back to Him?

God, as the creator of the earth is all the owner of everything on the earth.

Revelation 4:11

11 “You are worthy, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they were created
and have their being.”

Psalm 24:1-2

1 The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it,
the world, and all who live in it;
2 for he founded it on the seas
and established it on the waters.

So, when the creator and owner of the earth tells us to do something with what He has given to us, we probably ought to do it. What does God tell us to do with what He has given to us?

Proverbs 3:9-10

9 Honor the Lord with your wealth,
with the firstfruits of all your crops;
10 then your barns will be filled to overflowing,
and your vats will brim over with new wine.

Notice the blessing that comes when we honor God with our wealth. There are so many other verses about money, we could never cover them. But what we need to remember is that we can’t out give God. God just wants us to trust him with every aspect of our lives. And until we let him have control of our money, he won’t have control over our hearts.

I really do believe God wants to bless us. But God has to trust us too. He has to trust that when He sends blessings our way, we will use them for His glory and building up His kingdom, not padding our wallets and savings accounts. What kind of trust does that show in God? How can we say we trust God when we can’t even believe what he says about money? If we’re not willing to give God a chance with our money, how can we say we’ve fully trusted him with our lives and our eternities?

Giving is one of the tangible ways we can show God He is our Boss. Giving to God is a tangible way for us to express to God that He is in control of everything. That’s why we give the first 10% back to God. It’s our way of letting him be in control. We let Him be in charge of the first 10% and that helps us think in a godly way about the other 90%. It’s still hard for me to write that check every time I get paid. But I do, and every time it gets a little easier. And every time, it helps me remember that God wants to be first in everything. And I’ll tell you, it’s been amazing at how that one thing has created a shift in all of my life. Putting God first in money makes it easier to put God first in other areas of life. Maybe the reason your life is so messed up right now is because you’ve never taken that step of putting God first.

On Sunday, October 13th, we will be having a seminar on budgeting and money. We want to give you resources to be good stewards of what God has given to you. It’s called  “Good $ense.” In this seminar we will learn how our money views and habits correlate with our relationship with God. We’ll learn how culture influences our financial behavior. We’ll learn about budgets, finances and our relationship with our money. We’ll learn how to control our finances with new tools and skills. So, you’re going to want to mark your calendars for that and join us.

Let’s learn to trust God in every area of our lives, starting with money!