Lately Joel and I have been spending time in prayer over the subject of money...and it has gone right along with the Sunday morning sermons I listen to online with Saddleback Church and Rick Warren. This past week a guest preacher spoke on Malachi 3:10 and how we cannot outgive God and how and when he blesses us. Malachi is the only place in the Bible where God says, "Test me on this!"
Pastor Morris made one comment that really spoke to Joel and I. TITHING is the money we return to God (and His ministry)....GIVING is beyond the tithing. It is giving from our heart to those in need. I just love when I learn something knew or get a new perspective on something!
This is a good subject for us right now as we also learn to live on Joel's ELCA disability salary. He has gotten worse the past few months and the doctor did not feel he should be working even part time..just healing. It was sobering to hear, and of course we wondered how we would manage with 1/3 less income and so many out of pocket medical treatments bills.
To go along with this, the disability check came and was $500 short this month!
And here is the real kicker! Do to our large out of pocket medical expenses for two Lymies, we had recently made a decision to NOT buy anything we could not pay cash for~ part of our get out of debt plan ~ and then our newer dehumidifer broke, the 20 yr old washer started leaking, the the bathroom faucet broke, and both of our 27 in. TVs broke all within two weeks!! Seriously!!!! We actually got the giggles as we figured "this was a test"!!!
We knew God would provide. He always has, and He always will. We just wondered how. ( Don't misunderstand me~ God blessses us continually in many ways, not just with what we need financially....but today I am speaking on the subject of provisions.)
Like most people, we have more things than we need. We were able to find the old dehumidifer and use that, fix the faucet, AND bring out the 20 yr old 19 in. TV. I have cataracts so we just put it closer to us...in the middle of the floor and it worked fine! Then two weeks later, it turned out our son and daughter-in-love could not imagine us watching that small of TV, so they came for a visit and brought with them a gift ~ a 40 in. TV from their family room! (Being I have severe allergies, a new TV would cause me lung problems for quite awhile.) We went from a 19 in. to a 40 in. TV ~ our only form of entertainment since I am homebound. We were grateful for their generosity and more than a little overwhelmed by the gift.
And then an unexpected check came in the mail!
Yes, we cannot outgive God! He always provides! He has us doing the happy dance and wondering what surprises await us! We look forward to figuring out how to be debt free on less money~ just like the two fishes and 5 loaves of bread we look for it to happen! We look forward to all God has to teach us on this part of life's journey. One cash only day at a time.