Open-Handed Giving Reaps Rewards
Updated: Feb 19
Most of us need a paradigm shift in the way we view generosity. But understanding this principle will enhance our lives and our walk with Christ. Following this principle will bring tremendous freedom and joy to our everyday walk.
Generosity is not about who wants our money. It’s about Who wants our heart.
Understanding how God feels about generosity is important whether we have much or little. It’s all about what we do with what we have.
Being open-handed with our possessions (and our service and time) results in God being generous toward us. It’s a lovely circle of grace. We give because we have freely received from God. He continues to bless us as we bless others.
Win-win for everyone.
Open-handed living applies to all God generously gives us, to all His blessings: “Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.” Matthew 10:8 NIV
Financial giving has not been a difficult concept for me to grasp because my parents were good about teaching it when I was young. The principle of tithing, which is giving back to God a tenth of everything we earn, is simple when broken down in child-like terms. As a small child, my parents gave me a $1 allowance. Ten cents of that was for me to give at church.
Everything we have comes from God. It is all His anyway. He asks us to give back a small portion, the tithe, which simply means “tenth,” for the work of his Kingdom in the earth. He also desires “offerings,” which are gifts given freely for special purposes.
“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 NIV
God is so confident of this principle working that he tells us to test him on it. He will open the floodgates of heaven on us and pour out more blessing than we can contain.
I’m in. Sign me up. Giving away ten cents of one dollar isn’t hard!
However, parting with that amount many times multiplied can be difficult, especially if you aren’t accustomed to living without that tenth. If God is convicting you to start tithing, then ask for His wisdom to make the adjustments. Maybe He wants you to jump right in, or perhaps He will lead you to set a gradual goal and work toward it.
When we give the first tenth of all our income (yes, on the gross amount), then He blesses and stretches the remaining 90 percent.
If my husband and I experience a financial set-back of any degree, the first thing we check is whether we have faithfully been tithing. Busyness can inadvertently hinder our diligence in this area. If you are experiencing a financial devouring and feel like your pockets have giant holes in them, or even small ones, return to the basics.
Are you tithing? Are you living in an open-handed manner and giving offerings freely?
As a young adult, fresh out of college, when I didn’t have a clue about how to manage my finances, God was gracious to this simple tither. I gave regardless of how much or little I had for my utilities. Despite my fiscal ineptitude, God blessed. My first year out of college, my income tripled. Granted, I started low on the totem pole, but the point is that God gave the increase as I followed His principle for giving.
Fast forward to our daughter’s marriage.
Her father and I wanted to give her the wedding of her dreams. We were dismayed to hear an average wedding cost was about $25,000 at that time. As wedding plans progressed and bills began piling up, we realized this average cost was probably going to be realized. Our life savings was being depleted, but we held steady, trusting God.
During this same period, a natural gas deposit was discovered in our area of North Louisiana. The neighborhood we lived in was on the outskirts of town and investors were trying to lease our mineral rights individually. Our neighborhood decided to unite and deal with the oil companies as a group.
My husband and I were peripherally involved because who has time for that when working full time and planning a wedding? Besides, our home was just on 1.5 acres and how could that amount to much?
Two weeks before the wedding, we were asked to attend a private meeting at a neighbor’s home to sign our lease for mineral rights. We had no idea someone was going to hand us a check right then.
We were blown away. God directly paid for our daughter’s wedding with the minerals He planted underneath the home He knew we would one day occupy.
Tithe, give offerings, and trust God with your finances.
“Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see…”
See if God won’t do what He promises – to “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 NIV
And financial rewards are only the gravy.
“Yes, God rewards and blesses us when we give. However, the most precious and lasting blessings that come are often the ones no one can see." – Robert Morris, The Blessed Life
The really good stuff is intangible – peace, joy, contentment, and the security of knowing God has our back. His blessings will always flow to us in lovely ways when we give with open-handed faith.
Father, teach me to give. I open my heart to learn how to give with child-like faith that you will bless and provide for all my needs according to your riches in glory. Forgive me for holding tightly to that which belongs to you. Everything I have is yours. I acknowledge this fact and open my hands to you. I desire to be a blessing to those around me. Help me to follow the wisdom of your Word and put this giving principle into practice in my life. No longer will the enemy be able to devour my finances and physical resources as I take this step of obedience, in Jesus' name.
For more on the principle of giving, I highly recommend The Blessed Life by Robert Morris. I invite you to sign up below to receive emails when teachings are released. Feel free to share this blog.