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God's Math: My Biggest Raise

By Joyce W. Hairston

It wasn’t an unreasonable plan, this call to fund a new educational building so our children could be taught of the Lord. Our children did deserve the best. The pastor had caught the vision too. And so the plan was announced that every member should sacrifice a certain amount each month. In less than two years we’d have a new school building.

But I’m giving enough already, I thought. Surely that plan is not for me. I return a faithful tithe and a faithful offering. More than 25 years ago, I had cuaght the vision of the brethren and adopted what they called the “10+” plan. A few years ago I even got the vision that God should be given a raise in offering whenever I received a raise at work. Of course I believed in Christian education. My husband and I had faithfully followed the command of God, and all six of our children attended Christian schools. But wasn’t my 10 + 13 enough? That question troubled me when the plan was brought before the church to fund the new school buiding. I tried to convince myself that my giving was enough. After all, the church wasn’t my only responsibility.

But the more I tried to rationalize why I shouldn’t give to the plan, the more troubled I became. After three days of battling, I finally gave up and said, “Lord, I’m willing to give my part toward the building project.” That night when I arrived at work, I was told by my supervisor that it was time for my yearly evaluation. I left the meeting in a state of shock because I had received my biggest raise ever.

My calculator quickly explained the ramifications. Beyond the regular tithes and offerings, God would receive His “raise,” the building project would get my full share of “the plan,” and there’dbesomething extra for me. Once again I had been shown that I can’t beat God’s giving.

“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Luke 12:34