Testing & Transformation

“Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.” Malachi 3:10

For years I’ve pondered this verse. It’s the only place God specifically tells us to test him. However, I always struggled with this. Not trusting him. Not submitting to him. Not fully turning my life over to him. After fighting God on this specific principle most of my life, it wasn’t until some significant struggles were encountered that prompted a change for my family and me. Financial struggles increased significantly, things weren’t going well at work – would we be able to keep our home? Something needed to change.

One cold day in January, I received word that we had lost a large project at work that I had poured my life-blood and energy into for over 12 months. I was driving at the time and pulled over and had a life changing conversation with my Lord and Savior. Being a Type A individual, I’ve never wanted to relinquish control but now I knew what I was doing was not only not working, it was failing miserably. It was time to submit to God. He applies gentle pressure at first, but that pressure intensifies as you continue to disobey him and he will eventually get your attention.

I decided, despite these financial struggles, to begin faithfully tithing and it was hard; that is at first. The Enemy will tell you won’t be able to pay your bills. He’ll tell you not to trust God; but this time, it would be different. We started low and worked our way up to 10% and beyond. Over time I found a transformation was occurring. No longer was this an issue for me but an absolute joy and privilege; God was changing my heart. God used this area in my life as a catalyst to bring me to him. I’ve now learned that one of my spiritual gifts is that of giving.

Over this time, God has incrementally blessed my career and my family to the point I would not have imagined. That cold January day many years back, I decided to test God, to put his Word to the test and he has used that opportunity for my wife and me to truly get to know him on a personal level. Spending time with him on a daily basis has changed us from the inside out. It has been an absolute blessing and I’m so thankful I made that choice.

Questions & Applications

What areas of your life are you holding on to and not giving fully over to God? Family? Marriage? Work? Money? What is it that’s holding you back? Fear? Pride? Control? Pray for God to reveal the real reason for your distrust in this area and help you make changes.

Prayer

Thank you, Lord that you never give up on us! Thank you that you persist in loving us and desiring the best for us. Thank you for your faithfulness – you do what you say you’ll do! Help us, Father, to relinquish control to you daily, even minute by minute when necessary. It is when we are in your plan, your will, that we thrive.
Amen.