One night at the end of a church service in South Africa several people/couples came up for prayer concerning finances. They were all having serious financial distress. One woman was maxed out on her credit cards and couldn’t pay any of her bills. She was in a state of extreme alarm. One at a time I asked each person if they were tithing. Every one of them (except one man) answered “no”, because they didn’t feel they could afford to tithe. I told each of them there is no way I could pray a financial blessing on someone whom God had cursed. God says in Malachi 3:8,9, “Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation.”He then says in verse 10,” Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.”

So you see God makes it extremely clear that if you don’t give your tithes (10% of all you earn) and offerings (money you give God above your tithes as a gift from your heart), then you are cursed with a curse. No ones pleading and begging and crying before God can reverse the curse they have brought upon themselves by not giving God the tithes and offerings that are due Him. Thankfully there is a solution to the dilemma of financial lack…namely obey God. Let’s say a person needs $1000 per month to cover their bare needs. Let’s say that person only makes $500 per month. He is in distress and doesn’t see how he can give God $1 of his minimal income. He must shift gears in his thinking and determine that he will obey God no matter what his income is and trust God to take care of his needs. At that time he begins giving the Lord $50 per month which is the tithes he owes God. He also decides he wants to give God an extra $30 as a free will gift to God. He now has $500 minus $80, or $420 left to cover his expenses. But now he is obeying God, and God promises to open the windows of heaven and pour out a blessing he can not even contain. This may not happen overnight. This man may have to continue doing this month after month until he proves to God that he will be obedient no matter what happens. Eventually the person’s finances will turn around, because God is now blessing him. He will get a better job, or an increase in salary, or money from some unexpected source. God can bless him in a million ways that we have never thought of, but be sure of this…he will be blessed because that is God’s promise. It doesn’t make sense in the mind (flesh) that giving away money will end up increasing your finances, but it makes perfect sense in the Spirit because God never lies.

As each person in the prayer line promised to tithe and give love offerings to God, then I was very happy to pray for them, and believe God with all my heart that their finances will turn around. “One person gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.” (Prov.11:24 NIV)