I just received $20K for part of an insurance settlement. I want to tithe $2K and use the rest to pay off debts. But my wife has come unglued at me!! She now says we need to pay off our debts first then we can tithe later. She had been OK with small tithes but this large one has drove a wedge between us. I wish I had not got the $$ at all. Any suggestions or direction is appreciated for the folks in the Land of the Midnight Sun ..
Jim, from Anchorage, Alaska
I used to live in Anchorage. Great city, Great country!! There is every reason under the sun to keep paying your tithing. I can appreciate how someone not converted to the principle would feel about such an expenditure. But let me tell you about another person who felt the same and asked the same questions. It was several years ago up near Alberta, Canada, during a period of depression. The local bishop invited the president of the local bank to their stake conference. The main speaker at the conference spoke on the law of tithing, encouraging the members to pay their tithing. During the talk the bank president leaned over to the bishop and said, “I see quite a few people in the congregation here today who owe the bank money and are behind on their payments. I think that you ought to preach that you should pay your bills first.” The bishop said, “Let me come to the bank tomorrow with a list of my ward members who pay their tithing and those who do not, and let’s make a comparison with those who are behind on their payments.” When the comparison was made it was found that those who were behind in their payments were non-tithe payments, and those who paid their tithing were current with their payments. So the bank president agreed that it was a good idea for the people to pay their tithing before their other debts.
So if you neglect your tithing in order to please your wife, you will not please your wife, because you will be financially worse off than if a full tithing is the first check you write each month when you pay your bills. If you haven’t already done so, you might share with your wife the counsel of the Lord found in Malachi—
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 (Mal 3:10).
If I owed something to the God of Heaven and also to some person, I can’t imagine how foolish it would be to pay off the person before fulfilling my obligation to God, Himself.