i suppose the primary reason i started giving ten percent to the general budget of my church family was out of legalism. can’t say i’m real proud of that, but it’s probably the truth.
i grew up in a church that always preached the “tithe” (more on that in a couple of days). it was taught regularly and the inference was that god established it as a law in the old testament and jesus did nothing to abolish the old testament laws…so we should be expected to do at least as much as new testament disciples. ten percent (the tithe) was the standard of excellence in discipleship!
hey. it’s what i was taught and it was what i believed. i come from an era that trusted authority and leadership in the church in a completely different way than we experience now. i had a high respect for my parents and for the people who were in positions of influence…especially church influence…in my my life. my parents modeled the giving of ten percent and taught me to do the same. when i began to grow up, make money, get married, and live on my own, i followed their example.
now, honestly, i live such a completely different kind of life from my youth, it’s almost hard to remember. my reasons for giving are much deeper, much stronger, much broader. life is not as simple as it used to be. i am not as simple as i used to be. but frankly, the foundation is still there. interesting…
it makes me think…not just about money, but about everything. why is it so difficult to trust the judgment and direction of those older and wiser? why is it so easy to dismiss the patterns and practices of our elders, when it comes to discipleship? why do we trust our own impulses and logic when it comes to following jesus, instead of taking the baton from the previous leg of the relay and carefully pass it on to the future?