by Rick Warren — December 12, 2021
From God’s Vision for the Rest of Your Life
“Honor the Lord by giving him the first part of all your income."
Proverbs 3:9 (TLB)
I was eight years old when I went into a thrift store and bought my mother a dress for 25 cents. I thought it was a cool dress. It was about a size four, and my mom was a size 12. The clerk said, “Ricky, your mom couldn’t get her big toe in that dress.” I was so offended and went home crying. When I gave the dress to my mom, she was so thrilled. And when she died, I found that dress in one of her chests. She’d kept it all those years.
There’s nothing you can give God that he needs. But when you give him an offering, you’re saying, “God, I love you. I’m thinking of you. I want you first in my life.”
The Bible says, “Honor the Lord by giving him the first part of all your income” (Proverbs 3:9 TLB). That’s called tithing. The Bible says that tithing is 10 percent of what you earn, and it’s what you should do first with your income.
Tithing doesn’t just honor God. It is also an act of worship. But the Bible says not all giving is an act of worship. So what kind of giving is worship?
The Bible says, “On the first day of each week, you should each put aside a portion of the money you have earned” (1 Corinthians 16:2 NLT).
Worship giving is undesignated. That means you don’t control it, you don’t direct it, and you don’t tell God what to do with it.
Worship giving is given where you worship. It’s great to give to charities or friends in need, but that’s not worship through tithing. Your worship giving goes to your local church.
Worship giving is planned. You don’t just give spontaneously. You pray about it.
Worship giving is proportional. If you didn’t earn anything that week, don’t give anything. You earn a little, you give a little. You earn a lot, you give a lot.
Ultimately, God doesn’t want your money. He wants what your money represents. The most sensitive nerve in the body is the one that goes from the heart to the wallet. God wants your heart more than anything else.