Inspirational Musings

Is 10% Enough?

My attitude has been terrible lately. I have felt grouchy for no obvious reason, little things have set me on edge, and patience has been extremely hard to come by. I was doing some journaling earlier in the week, hoping to figure out why my attitude has been so stinky, when I had a realization. I can’t remember the last time I accomplished a goal and finished a project. I made a list of all of the things I have been working on or needed to work on and the list almost sent me into a panic attack. The reason I feel frazzled is because I am! I have so many loose ends that are looming in the backdrop of my mind that they are causing added stress at an unconscious level.

In light of this new revelation, I looked at my list and picked the major stressors and I am working on them this week. I honestly feel lighter and less impatient. I finished and submitted our taxes last night, which was a huge chore off of my shoulders. I also began weeding my flower beds and moving lilies to the new bed out front since the weather has been nice. I’m also working on conquering the mountain of clean clothes that seems to migrate from place to place around the bedroom. Next week I will tackle grading end of term projects, putting baseboards in Carter’s room, and several other little projects on the list.

In the middle of the realization this week, I was reading in the book of Malachi. There’s a piece of a verse in chapter 3, that says, “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse.” I read the whole chapter and saw that this verse was contextually speaking to the Israelites about being faithful to give God what is due Him, but it hit me in a different way. Traditionally a tithe is the first 10% of the production, whether it’s presented monetarily or in the actual produce. David and I faithfully try to do this each month with our money and give God His 10% before paying other bills. But what if there’s more to it? What if “bringing the whole tithe” isn’t just money, but pieces of ourselves?

I started looking at my list of projects, recounting all the times I’ve had a bad attitude this week, and then assessed the use of my time. Have I been presenting God these things first before I try to handle them? Have I been bringing Him my strengths and weaknesses, questions and concerns, up and downs? Am I just tithing of my money or am I also tithing of MYSELF?

titheWhat am I offering God? Is it the leftovers or the first fruits? Am I surrendering to Him some of the things in my life or all of the things? Am I willing to lay it all at His feet and not just 10%?

I’m extremely challenged as I continue to ponder these questions. I feel parts of me automatically wanting to hold on tighter as my heart knows it’s time to let go and trust Him, but my “self” longs to keep those things close and under MY control. I’m praying that God will show me what this looks like and that He will show me how to let go and trust Him with everything and not just 10% at the beginning of the month. He is asking for it all. Why is that so hard?

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