Which Comes First?

I want to discuss a ‘small’ thing.  Well, at least, it seems small.  It concerns our giving to God.  Without going into all the background, and understanding that everyone has their own concept of giving to God, and how much one should give, etc…  I will simply indicate just a small item that has affected me personally, and which someone might find useful.

[Disclaimer – No one should take from what is discussed here as their rule, or take any specific portion as the only way to do things.  That is not the purpose.  The purpose is to get the reader to think about their own personal giving to God.]

When we receive income we, like most of you, have many obligations which must be paid out of that.  Since I’m self-employed I have to handle my own taxes, and must push aside sums that will ensure that all my tax obligations can be met.  And there are other things, too.

While everyone has their own standard that they may apply to their giving we hold to a very simple concept – 10% belongs to God, along with our regular offerings and other giving.  I wouldn’t want to argue with anyone about that, it’s just what we have decided we will do, along with plenty of Bible references that would indicate this is proper.

The point of this posting, however, is not discuss how much you should be giving, as that is something you and God will need to determine.  The point is – which comes first?

Some would pay their obligations and with what is left, then determine what God should receive.  Then, others, would work it the other way around.

When I receive money from my business I have two very important initial steps that I do:

  1. Calculate what our portion to God is
  2. Calculate what portion goes to Uncle Sam

It really doesn’t matter which order these steps are performed in, or does it?  If the amounts come out the same, then what difference could it possibly make?  What difference does it make if I make my account to account transfer to Uncle Sam first, then write my check for God’s portion? (Note, we are not talking about differences in amounts, only differences in timing).  After all, the check won’t be submitted to my church until Sunday, and even then it may take several days before it hits the bank.  So, what difference does it make?

My friends think I’m a little off, and I suppose that is true, as I’ve never done things the ‘ordinary’ way.  In the case above I have to admit I try to always write God’s portion first.  I admit sometimes I forget, but it is always a priority for me to get the sequence right.  Now the big question is WHY?

The ‘why’ is probably not what you think.  It doesn’t have to do with what is proper, what is required, or following any rules.  It doesn’t have anything to do with what is written in the Bible.  Then WHY give God’s portion first?

It has to do with love.  He first loved me, and now I love Him.  Because I love Him, I want Him to be first.  I’m not seeking a blessing or favor or reward.  I just want Him to know I put Him first.  A ‘small’ thing?  Yes, a small thing, but it is something I can do.  It is not something that I boast about, as this is the first time I’ve ever disclosed this to anyone.  It is just my small way of saying, “I love you”….


One Response to “Which Comes First?”

  1. Barbara McGuire Says:

    Oh my! I absolutely LOVED this blog!! Sounds likes you and I are on the same page. I actually give God a 10th of even a gift card that I receive. Why? Because I, too, love Him! What joy there is in learning this lesson early on. Thanks for such great words of wisdom! It’s really sad that people cheat themselves out of everything that God has in store for them! Thanks for sharing and blessings to you and yours….

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