The Miracle of Tithing from GROSS Income

August 2009

As some of you may know, since 2006 I experienced many incredible miracles related to tithing (giving 10% of my salary to the church). The miracles (amazing as they were) were related to tithing from NET. It was only last week when I watched a sermon by Creflo Dollar that I realised I should have been tithing from GROSS income. He said:
  • What we (truly) get is GROSS income
  • The government takes X% (larger than 10%) of the GROSS income as taxes before the income even gets to us. They do so because they don't trust us.
  • In contrary, God allows His 10% (less even than government tax) to go into our pockets to see if He could trust us to give it back to Him.

As I pondered on this, I realised if the government gets taxes from my gross, why shouldn't God also get tithe from my gross? After all, God has done far more for me than what the government could ever do for me. So this inspired me to tithe to God from my gross income as of now (August 2009). As usual, God responded to my heart for tithing; this was the sequence of events that took place:

  • I learnt about tithing from gross income on Thursday and made a decision to do so;
  • I worked and logged out of my computer on Friday;
  • I went to church and gave my tithe on Saturday;
  • I logged into work on Sunday to check my emails and saw that the Director of the Knowledge Management Department in the United States had written to me and given me an award of £310, as follows:

How To Redeem Your award:

Amount:

GBP 310

Expiration Date:

26 Aug 2010


Dear Elma Larsen, 
Thank you for your extremely valuable contributions to the Knowledge Community effort! Your courses on effective article writing, your support for the Knowledge Community strategy and processes, and your positive attitude about this work have truly made a difference world wide!


This was an incredible recognition from someone so high up who barely knew me, who had ever only met me once in a seminar! The award was sent to me on Friday morning (US time) which is equivalent to Friday around midnight UK time (well after I left work), hence why I hadn't seen it when I logged out on Friday, until I logged back in on Sunday.


A BEAUTIFUL CONCLUSION

  • God saw the intentions of my heart to honour Him with my tithing (from GROSS income), so He honoured me back. He did it in such a beautiful way as to beat me to it! He blessed me with an award BEFORE I even gave my tithe, but He didn't let me see it until AFTER I gave.
  • The award and recognition were amazing, but there was something more, something mind blowing - which is the whole experience of competing with God in love. I wanted to love God more than He loves me. Of course, I could never win as God is an eternal being without limits to His power, and I am a human being with limitations in every aspect. Thus God will always love me more than I could ever love Him, but nevertheless it was an indescribable experience to try and out-love God, He was courteous enough to let me try, but out manoeuvred me in a clever and timely way. I love the way He works, I love losing to Him :-)


A CONTINUATION

The story didn't end there, something else happened. The £310 award came in the form of a voucher that can only be spent / redeemed at a certain fashion shop. It could not be exchanged for cash, so I had to spend as much of it as possible (preferably all of it). As I visited the shop, I looked at all the things they had, but things were either too cheap or too expensive, and it was difficult working out several items that I could buy to make up the £310 (I didn't want to buy something just to make up the amount). 

Just as I was getting tired and fed up with this way of shopping, I spotted an area in the shop that I had not browsed, it was a small area in the corner tucked away from the rest of the shop. As I approached the corner, a coat caught my eye. It was the most beautiful coat I had ever seen. It was multicoloured, designed by Desigual. There were a few there, and all of them were unique. One particular one stood out from the rest, I took it and tried it on, it fitted perfectly. I looked at the price, it was £310.... what?! I thought, this must be what God wanted me to buy. So I bought it.

Desigual multicoloured coat
The coat has been with me for several years now. Every time I wore it, it would attract so much attention from people that they would come and chat to me. The coat is an ice breaker! What a way to get to know people and to love them with God's love if only for a moment. 

One day, as I was preparing for a tithing sermon, I looked back at this miracle of tithing from gross and realised something amazing......

This multicoloured coat that God had led me to buy with a voucher is reminiscent of another multi-coloured coat in the Bible, that of Joseph. Indeed, Joseph was given a multicoloured coat by his father because his father loved him dearly. In the same way, God was trying to tell me He loves me dearly, and that He is my Father. So once again, God wins hands down in out-loving me. Now, whenever I wear the coat, a special meaning enters my heart - it is a reminder of how God has out-loved me. The memory of this brings tears to my eyes because it really was an indescribable experience.

One final thing ...

One day as I was wearing the coat, I looked at myself in the mirror, and thought I saw what looked like a white bird poo on it (see front left of picture, just underneath the red block of fabric near the edge). I started to wipe it clean, but the mark wouldn't go away. When I looked more closely, it was actually a white thread that had been woven into the coat as part of the pattern. I laughed out loud, not only because I had mistaken it for a bird poo, but also because I knew God wanted me to think it was a bird poo; a marking that yet again signified His love for me (see my bird/pigeon poo story). 

This is such a funny story showing God's excellent sense of humour. I love Him more and more as I see how He works in my life. What an amazing God He is - Praise be to Him!