Most of us can recall learning the poem about Old Mother Hubbard.
Old Mother Hubbard, Went to the cupboard
To get her poor doggie a bone, When she got there
The cupboard was bare
So the poor little doggie had none.
I was reminded of this nursery rhyme during the week – and the message of this poem is not lost on me as I consider the reality that our church's cupboard is leading to a bare cupboard too...
Please consider the implications of our ministry within our church and wider community. At present our church's income is close to $25k behind budget. I know that many godly committed church families are feeling the effect of the recent global financial crisis (GFC) and the result is less money to go around. That and the busyness of life causes us to overlook our responsibility in keeping the 'cupboard' at BPCC stocked.
Consider scripture that encourages and reminds us the importance of giving God our tithes. There are also testimonies, books and messages that emphasise it. One of them is a recent message from lifechurch.tv called 'Financial Margin'.
Here are some of the truths that are shared in the message: 'Malachi 3:8-10; Scripture tells us, "Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse", (that is the church). Bring 10% of what God trusts to us into the house of God, that there may be food in my house. What does tithing do? When we bring our first and our best, God will bless the rest. It trains us, teaches us that God will do more with 90% than we can do with 100%. Tithing builds our faith. It's one of the most tangible and practical ways that we can put God first. We have to rearrange our lives around God. We have to say no to so many things in this world, so we can say yes to putting God first. The Biblical, honourable, faithful tithe, returning 10% back to God...
Matthew 6:19-21, Jesus said; "Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy..." Which in so many ways, that is the opposite of what many peoples lifetime goal is, to store up, get more; more, more, more. That's our life, that's what we want to do. Jesus said, "Don't do that! That's so foolish!" He says, instead, "Store up treasures in heaven....For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also". A very fair translation of this verse would be to say, for where your money goes, there your heart follows'.
A lot for us to consider and pray about. May I encourage you all to take the step of faith and discipline to give God what he asks and deserves.
Correction: Last week I gave the wrong reference for the two verses from the Psalms. The correct reference is Psalm 36:1-2 (NLT)