I’m a believer that tithing is good for business and in case you are now getting to know me, you should know that I am a Christian and I grew up as a Preacher’s Kid. This PK title came with its own set of angsts and expectations, many of which I probably lived up to, both the good and the bad ones. But this post isn’t about that.
A client recently shared how her business partner had said yes to a free gig that took considerable time away from other work. In a time like this, giving away valuable work hours could earn you a one-way trip to the broke house. They did not even collect gas money for the project, which involved significant travel.
Tithing is a biblical principle that required the children of Israel to give 10% of all they earned to the priest. In today’s world, we give to churches and other charities. I have proven more times than I can count, that this is an effective strategy for personal and professional wealth building.
Over the years, I’ve heard the questions and negative comments about paying tithes to a church. “The pastor just stealing your money”, etc. In the church organization I grew up in, tithing was part of the doctrine and it was also used to pay the salary of the pastor, while the rest went to the regional and international offices.
My dad, was often asked to pastor the churches on the periphery. They were never the larger more established churches. Granted, back in the 70s and 80s, he was the new kid on the block and naturally got the starter churches. But when you’ve got a family of four girls to feed and your church membership is less than 12 people, with half of that being your family, then living from the tithe is really an impossibility. The kind of impossibility that requires God to do miracles or you find another job. My mother was the main breadwinner for many years. She is now retired as a public school teacher but her salary kept us afloat, especially as dad was a full-time minister. He would take evangelical trips to other islands, with the hope he could come home with income to keep us going. Over the years, he became quite astute at finance and found other ways to leverage his small salary to sustain the family.
What does tithing have to do with your business?
My mom and dad tithed of everything they received. Over the years, I saw how this attitude to giving increased us as a family and how he was able to help the churches and members he pastored grow and reach bigger and bigger financial goals. He proved over and over that tithing was good for business, even if it were church business. I grew up learning I should tithe but when I was out on my own and tough times hit, the first thing I held back was the10% that the bible says belongs to God. What’s a girl to do?
I was never as committed to that doctrine as my parents were, until it became real to me. I had to make it a non-negotiable no matter the state of my finances. Over the years, I have been in jams where there was no money to tithe from. In those times, I did what my client did, I tithed my time and experience. I would pour into someone when really what I needed were paying clients.
I wanted to share a few reasons why I believe tithing is good for your business and a greater benefit to you than the pastor or whatever organization you give to.
Tithing Unblocks Your Flow
Have you ever heard the story of the man that went out to capture a monkey? He cut a hold in a coconut and placed some nuts inside of it. The monkey came by and spotted the coconut with the nuts inside, and he easily slipped his hand inside to grab them. When he tried to pull his hand out, it was stuck. For nothing good would that monkey release the nuts he had captured. After all that was what he came for. The man caught the monkey.
Our money flow gets blocked because our hands are locked tightly. Tithing is an intentional act of choosing to give God the first portion rather than what is left over once the bills are paid. There’s magic in this, because whenever I take the 10% off first, I gain wisdom on how to portion out the other 90% better so it can go the distance.
When you find that there is no money flowing into your business or your personal finances, take a look at your giving. Where can you loosen your fist and become a generous giver?
Tithing Takes Your Mind Off Your Own Needs
Tithing is a power move. You are making a declaration to your empty wallet and bank account that you will not be subject to it’s current state. Shifting away from thoughts of lack to blessing someone else shifts your mental state. A mindset focused on giving, is attractive to wealth. The act of focusing on someone else sets off a chain reaction, which requires the universe to do what it was programmed by God to do. Give back to those who give to others.
Tithing Increases Your Happiness Quotient
This is one time when the warm fuzzies are a good, even great thing. Tithing from what you make intentionally provides the space for you to put others ahead of yourself. Go ahead and enjoy the good feeling of knowing that you are a giver and that you can honor God with a portion of what you have. Good feelings attract good clients and money. When you feel great you are more productive and that is great for business too.
Tithing is a Biblical Commandment with a Promise
My client shared that a few days after completion, she received a call from an old friend who wanted to hire her company to do some work. When she went to the meeting, she met another gentleman who on discovering they were the same ones who had done all of the free work, wanted to hire them for a major project.
God promises that you can put Him to the test. You tithe and He opens the windows of heaven and releases wisdom and opportunities for you to gain more than you gave. You cannot out give God. (Malachi 3: 8-12)
Tithing is a principle with built in blessings. You don’t lose when you do. While you can tithe of your experience, time, and cash, nothing tests us more than giving away your money.
John D. Rockefeller Sr. once the richest man in the world said “I never would have been able to tithe the first million dollars I ever made if I had not tithed my first salary, which was $1.50 per week.”
We always think we will become givers when we get more money or pay off a bill. Not so, you become what you practice. Give with your little and as you increase, you will find your desire to give increases as well.
Listen to Tony Robbins share why he believes success comes from giving.
You don’t need to tithe to a church. It can be to your favorite charity or an organization doing work you believe is providing a resource to others. You can give your time to another entrepreneur or youth who needs the financial support or guidance. The goal is never for the one you give to, to give back to you. The responsibility to return more than you gave is on God, not the receiver.
I wish you good success in every area of your life and business. Share your thoughts on whether you believe tithing is good for business and how you approach giving with me in the comments, where ever you read this article.
Scriptures on Tithing
Nehemiah 10:35-37 – 35 “We also assume responsibility for bringing to the house of the LORD each year the firstfruits of our crops and of every fruit tree. 36 “As it is also written in the Law, we will bring the firstborn of our sons and of our cattle, of our herds and of our flocks to the house of our God, to the priests ministering there. 37 “Moreover, we will bring to the storerooms of the house of our God, to the priests, the first of our ground meal, of our grain offerings, of the fruit of all our trees and of our new wine and olive oil. And we will bring a tithe of our crops to the Levites, for it is the Levites who collect the tithes in all the towns where we work.
Malachi 3: 8-12 – 8 “Will a mere mortal rob God? Yet you rob me. “But you ask, ‘How are we robbing you?’ “In tithes and offerings. 9 You are under a curse—your whole nation—because you are robbing me. 10 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. 11 I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not drop their fruit before it is ripe,” says the LORD Almighty. 12 “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the LORD Almighty.
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Nerissa Golden is media and business strategist and the author of seven books, including In Plain Sight and The Making of a Caribbeanpreneur: Strategies for Overcoming Fear and Building Wealth. Follow her on Instagram or LinkedIn for more tips and ideas to help you grow as a Caribbean entrepreneur.