Back In God's Court

I want to use a blog post comment that I received yesterday as an opportunity to encourage you.  As I do, I want to thank Patti for leaving this comment!   Here's what Patti had to say in response to the blog post, God Goes First:

"I have been in church all my life, but I have always had trouble being consistent with my tithe. God has helped me to take part in the generosity pledge. I gave my tithe last Friday, the minute I got paid. Within an hour, I got contacted from work that my hours would be cut, which made a difference of around 80 a week. What amazed me was instead of me getting upset I felt the peace of God letting me know that everything would be all right. I felt such a wonderful peace that God is in control."

A pastor friend of mine named Allen taught me this powerful leadership lesson: "Always put the ball back in their court."  If this seems confusing, let me explain by sharing an example.  My son's room is usually a mess.  When Luke comes to me and says, "Can I have a snack?" I might ask, "Is your room clean?"  If he answers, "No" then my response is, "When you clean your room you can have a snack.  The ball is in your court."

I view tithing the same way.  When I tithe, I put the ball back in God's court.  Let me explain this in more detail.  It is my hope that by what you read, you will experience the same peace that Patti experienced.  Okay...Are you ready?  I'm gonna be direct.

I believe giving your tithe (10% of all monies you earn/gain) back to God is a command, not a suggestion.  I said "back to God" on purpose.  It's all God's.  He lets you and me have some of his stuff.  Then to see if we trust him, God puts the ball into our court and tells us to give 10% back to him.  

So now...The ball is in your court.  What are you doing with the ball?  What are you doing with the 10% that God asks you to give back to him?  I find it silly for a person to pray, asking God to help them in their $$ when they won't be obedient with the $$ He has already given them.  Think this through...God asks for 10% and you get to keep 90%.  It's a sweet deal.  

Please, please, please catch this.  When you give God back that small percentage, 10%, you also put the ball back in His court!  When you give your tithe, you also put ALL the pressure back on God to do what He says He will do.  This is the peace that Patti wrote about.  

When you tithe...And your hours get cut, it's not your $$ problem, it's God's!
When you don't tithe (and I'm meaning you give 9.9% or less)...And your hours get cut, it's your problem.  You better get to work and figure out what you're going to do.  

One more thought.  If you can't live on 90%, you are probably so stretched thin that you can't live on 100% either.  If that's the case...Let's talk.  And I'm being serious.  You need a budget...You don't need more prayer about money.  

I told you I was going to be direct.  Why?  Because I want you to win at this thing called life.  Life is hard enough.  Why make it more difficult by ignoring God's ways when it comes to the $$ He lets you have? 

Put the ball back in His court,
Pastor Matt