When Giving Reaps a 100 fold Return ...from Trust to Treasure
Updated: Nov 11, 2020
Unfortunately, tests from God do not come when we have all the answers and are prepared.
Tests come at a time when we are at rock bottom, and couldn’t guess the right answer from a multiple choice question. It's in these times when presented with a trial, we have to dig deep for our solutions.
“I don’t have an answer for this,” we respond when we're blind sighted by life. ”I haven’t a clue. I have no idea how to handle this problem because I've never had anything like this happen before. I have no experience, let alone any answers.”
“Great,” God’s comeback. “Perfect time to teach you to trust.”
As fear grips our emotions, we realize this is a new area that we do not trust God in. We have never seen nor experienced His overcoming power in this situation. Of course we trust Him for certain things, but when tested in areas of unbelief and doubt we resort to our own failing survival skills. And sure enough, we fail over and over again,
until we wake up and realize that God is the only answer.
I believe God prepares the backdrop for our trials, purposefully exposing our fears. Fears that if overcome transform the heart. Therefore, God designs these tests that cannot be easily dismissed like forgotten homework swept under the desk.
‘Wow,” we are shocked after miserably failing our test revealing our heart. "I never knew that was in me. I never knew I was so afraid, callous, greedy, cowardly, selfish." and the list goes on. In our dismay, our pride has been stripped, and we are now ready.
Carve my Heart
“Please God, can you take out this heart of stone, and put a new spirit in me? Will you replace this fear with courage? Will you replace this selfishness with selflessness." praying to be transformed.
These tests are life-changing, and require a life decision of either caving into fear, or rising up in faith, giving God the knife and saying, “I’m ready, carve my heart.”
My test came at a time when I was in my worst financial state possible. Albeit, the best time possible for my test.
I had been a successful fashion designer, but after 7 years, I wanted to do something else. I
reasoned, if I figured out how to succeed once, I could figure out how to do it again. My lofty ideas of how life was going to work, was just perfect. I bought a new little condo, with a great view, and drank cappuccino by day, and sipped wine by night.
My life was a breeze, I had money in the bank, and now all the time in the world to decide my next career venture. While leisurely sitting back in my fluffy down pillows, I opened my mail as usual to glance over meaningless information which ended up in the trash. Upon opening my stock brokerage account I squinted to adjust my eyes at my balance.
“That’s impossible!” I panicked. “How can this be! That’s impossible!”
My stocks crashed. I had enough money remaining to support my mortgage for about four months, with no job in sight.
My cappuccino went up, my glasses fell off, and my world turned upside down.
I had never been in this situation before. Always, secure with my finances, and proud of my success, for the first time in my life, a fear came over me like never before.
“I will be homeless in four months! I don’t know what to do! I need a job TODAY!”
Normally, I skim through the newspaper for the next Nordstrom sale, yet now I was panicking to find the classified ads. ‘What in the world could I do? It had to be a position, that I could take home a paycheck home ASAP.”
“Okay, okay, here’s something. An assistant to a mortgage broker. I can do that. I use to be a mortgage broker. I can do that!”
I ran into the interview that day, and was hired. “When can you start?” they politely asked. All embarrassment aside, I answered,”NOW!”
Being introduced to my new boss, a spunky little girl barely out of college, bounces over to me and says “Hi!” Not knowing whether to shake her hand or give her knuckles, I respectfully introduced myself. “Hello, I am your new assistant.”
I use to hire girls twice her age, I thought to myself, “okay, okay, I can do this.”
What a difference a day makes! Truer than ever before.
I knew that my newfound job was nothing more than a desperate panic attack, and it wasn’t going to help.
“God, I am afraid. I am really afraid. What do I do?” I cried on the floor of my apartment after my first day at work, right next to the crumpled bank statement.
“Lisa, I want you to tithe back to me. It's time to give 10% of your income.
“Lord, I can’t do that! I can’t do that! Not now! If the stocks come back, I will do it later. I don’t have enough money for that.” He was asking me to do something that I not only had no faith for, but absolutely no courage for.
“Lisa,’ once again He spoke, “You are in a battle now. It is the same battle as David and Goliath. There will be one victor, and one of defeat. From that point forward, one nation will serve the other. Either you will serve fear of finances for the rest of your life, or you will serve Me.
Bring all the tithes into the storehouse of heaven. If you do,” says the Lord “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing beyond your wildest dreams that you won’t have enough room to take it in! Try it! Put me to the test! Malachi 3:10
I felt as though I was underwater holding my breath, but rather than coming up for air, I felt as though God was asking me to exhale. Trusting that somehow, with no resources of my own, He would give me a breath to surface.
As if I was standing before Goliath, in trembling fear. I knew that if I did not tithe ( giving 10% of profits) and trust today, that I was conceding the battle to my foe.
I continued to read Malachi 3:10 over and over, I will pour out a blessing, and I will defeat your devourer for your sake. I will restore your losses.
“Do you promise??” I pleaded. I knew this was a test of trust. Just as David picked up a small stone to slay Goliath, I exhaled in the spirit my last breath of attachment to my finances and threw my stone against my giant. “Okay, God I will tithe.”
The Final Test
I wrote a check out that day, worth a month’s salary from my newfound job.
Yet, once written and placed in an envelope, I didn’t have the courage to mail it.
“Help, God, I am still afraid.”
“Get on your knees. I want you to pray over this. I am going to bless you 100 times from this amount.”
I reasoned that before I died, somehow, slowly but surely, I would be blessed. Yet, that did not matter any longer. What mattered is that I killed my giant. No longer would I bow down to fear of finances. Instead, I surrendered to the provision of God.
Three months had passed, and I received another piece of life changing mail.
I opened up an envelope, and again my cappuccino went up, my glasses fell down, I was holding an unannounced dividend check worth 200 times what I had given just months before.