Those of you who know me well know that I am a very competitive person. If we are going to play something, then I’m “in it to win it!” I mean, what is the point of playing if you are not trying to win? When I play in a fundraiser golf tourney, yes, I’m excited about raising money for the cause, but I’m bringing in my ringers. My goal in any four-person scramble is to be the worst golfer. I’ve learned that this is my only shot at winning the championship.
The other night, we had the staff families over for dinner. We started playing a little boccie ball in the backyard. Let me just say that Julia and I went undefeated. Nobody comes into my backyard and takes me down. I told Julia, “We must defend this house!”
A few years ago when we first started Graystone Church, we met at Discovery Point Daycare. We did the whole set up and tear down thing. After the service, we would all stick around, load up the trailers with the chairs,sound equipment, etc., and then we would go to lunch. We are sitting at lunch one day and Don Shackleton starts talking about his “man cave” down in his basement. He’s talking about his big screen TV, Foosball table, darts, and his brand new ping pong table. He asks me if I play ping pong. I told him that our family had a ping pong table when I was growing up and that I could play. Then, he preceded to start talking trash about how he could beat me. I told Shack that there is nothing that he could be me in that had anything to do with athletics, especially in a racket sport. I played college tennis and am pretty good at ping pong, racquetball, badminton, etc. Shack continues talking trash and says that he is part Asian and uses the Japanese ping pong grip. After listening to Shack run his mouth the entire lunch, I got in my car and drove straight to his house. We went down into his “man cave” and in front of his wife and son, I skunked him 7-0 in about 90 seconds. He complained about the light being bad on his side of the table, so we switched sides and I pounded him again. I beat him about 7 straight games before he finally shut up.
Why am I so competitive? Why do I like to win? Why do I want to be first? Well, I like to think that I get my competitiveness from my father, my heavenly Father that is. God is very competitive. He wants to win. He wants to be first in our lives. He wants to be first in every area of our lives. And money is no different. He wants us to give him a tithe(1/10), 10% of our income. Many people say that they do not have enough money left over at the end of the month to give to God. Well, God does not want our leftovers, he wants our first fruits.
It’s interesting to me that people will not trust God with the tithe. They will trust Him with everything else, but not their money. If you are one of those that doubts God’s promise to bless those who tithe, then I challenge you to put God to the test. God says to test him in the tithe and see if he will not throw open the floodgates of heaven with so much blessing that you will not have enough room for it. I challenge you to tithe for 3 months and see what happens.
I cannot wait to hear all the stories of God’s blessings on those who are faithful to put Him first in EVERY area of their lives.