“Supplying Every Need,” Day 3: The parable of the pack of Mentos

October 28, 2015

cover_graphic3I recently created a 14-day devotional booklet for my church called “Supplying Every Need.” We’re using it to prepare for our upcoming Stewardship Commitment Sunday on November 8. I will be posting a devotional each day between now and then. Enjoy!

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 9:6-14

Occasionally, in the checkout line at Publix, I’ll give in to my boys’ request for gum or candy. The truth is, I have a sweet tooth, too, and I love Mentos. Let’s say there are twenty pieces of Mentos in a pack. Would I be asking too much of my son if I said, “Could you give me two pieces?” Of course not! (Two pieces in a 20-piece pack would literally be a tithe.)

But wouldn’t it be ungrateful for one of them to say, “These Mentos are mine. I can’t let you have two pieces. But I’ll tell you what I will do: I’ll cut one of these pieces into three smaller pieces, and I’ll give you one of these smaller pieces”? This would equal about one-and-a-half percent of the pack. (The typical churchgoer in America gives only one-and-a-half percent to church.)

As a father, should I be happy with that tiny portion—especially given that I bought the pack in the first place? Should I be happy with a third of one Mento in a 20-Mento pack? Should I be happy with one-and-a-half percent of a pack of Mentos that I bought with my own money?

Of course not! I’d have a right to be disappointed in my child, wouldn’t I? I’d even have a right to discipline my child by withholding additional future blessings—for instance, the next time they asked for a pack of Mentos.

My point is, we often treat our heavenly Father this way in our financial giving.

As Paul makes in clear in today’s scripture, we’re only hurting ourselves by failing to be generous. We’re the ones who miss out on a spiritual blessing from God—who, Paul says, will “enrich us in every way” and “make grace abound in us.”

Do you tithe (i.e., give ten percent of your income) to God through church? Are you as generous in your giving as you want to be? If you’re not currently tithing, what concrete steps could you make this year toward reaching that goal?

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