“Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” – Mark 10:21 NIV
One thing I’ve been learning lately is that the measure of true Christianity is not in what your confession is in the calm, but what it is during the storm. When all is well and your needs are more than fully met it’s easy to quote and ‘stand’ on scripture. It’s easy to judge the above rich man when you are not rich. If you receive a salary of ten thousand and after expenses you are left with six thousand, its easier to pay a thousand rand tithe. If Christ asked you to give away possessions worth twenty thousand we could all probably do it without hesitating. Now let’s level up and say your net worth is twenty million and you are already tithing two million and Christ asks you to sell all that you have and follow Him. Now that’s when the flesh becomes very uncomfortable. This is wealth accumulated over many years of sacrifice and you are expected to just give it all away.
As a businessman your livelihood has taken a serious knock and profits have been drastically reduced for a couple of months. Let’s say, you have church and personal commitments. Hypothetically speaking you have to pay tithe, car installment, partnership and your bond. Each requiring five thousand and you are only left with fifteen thousand. As a good Christian you sacrifice the bond for the first month and trust GOD for a breakthrough soon. Month two, it’s the same scenario and still trusting GOD for a miracle. Month three creditors are threatening legal action and the bank wants to start an eviction process. The ‘087’ number is frantically calling and leaving threatening messages, what do you do then? This is the time when your giving motives are put to the serious test and exposed. All the scriptures you’ve been quoting have to come to life. The foe then gives you a suggestion, “don’t pay tithe and partnership this month, GOD will understand. You’ve been faithful for so long, I’m sure other people’s offerings will cover your commitments for the next couple of months”. If you haven’t had these inner thoughts I pray to GOD that you never have to go through them because at times they speak logic and they make sense. The problem is, logic and sense contradict faith and following them leads to rebellion to GOD’s word. It’s during these challenging times that the motives of all that we do for GOD is challenged and put to the ultimate test. It’s what you do during these storms and what your confession is that sets you apart.
When your giving is out of your love for GOD, these storms will come but they will never derail you. When your giving is not out of obligation but out of love it never stops. The old woman gave her last money out of love and not obligation. Logic always trumps obligation but cannot and will not trump love. Love will always overcome any form of logic and trial. God allows these trials to reveal our inner most thoughts (Psalm 139:23) and trust me He will reveal your heart to you and you might not like what you see. It’s during these times that His love and grace carries us and propels us to a deeper relationship with Him. We come out on the other side changed people who no longer do things out of obligation but out of genuine and authentic love.
It’s during these challenging times that the motives of all that we do for GOD is challenged and put to the ultimate test.