Easter without church; don’t forget to give

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It is no secret that Easter is the second most popular day of the year for church attendance. It generally falls just behind Christmas services.

Many people who don’t go to church every week will still visit on Christmas and Easter. In fact, pastors have a term for those folks — Chreasters.

Because Easter attracts so many visitors who willingly drop a few dollars in the collection plate, it should be no surprise that Easter weekend is often a budget maker or budget breaker for churches. That’s especially true for those churches that are supported by people who don’t practice tithing.

Tithers generally set up automatic deductions or payments that are made whenever they get paid. Churches supported by non-tithers usually rely upon people dropping money in collection plates when the doors are open.

I know a whole bunch of people who think churches are all about money simply because they ask for donations every week. Unfortunately, some churches do just collect money to fund their own little empires.

Yet, many other churches collect funds to support missionaries in the field and programs to bring God’s word and the hope offered through a relationship with Jesus Christ to people far and wide.

Church services have been cancelled throughout the world in recent weeks, but churches must still pay their fixed expenses. Costs for mortgages, utilities, insurance, software subscriptions and other contracts don’t stop just because a government entity rules that the doors can’t be open on Sunday morning.

Don’t forget about people employed by the church. They need to be paid, too. The church staff is really trying to rise to the occasion to support families confined at home.

Some churches are really stepping up their outreach programs to provide food and essential supplies or services to people who are now out of work. Google shows dozens of examples of current church efforts to meet the sudden needs in our country and around the world.

Malachi 3:10-12 encourages us to bring the whole tithe into the church.

“Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.

“I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not drop their fruit before it is ripe,” says the LORD Almighty. “Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the LORD Almighty.

Yes, we are in uncertain times. Yes, we could be out of work in a few weeks ourselves.

But, if I read that bible passage correctly, when we tithe, we can trust God to protect our livelihood so that pests, like coronavirus, don’t take away our fruit.

Now, more than ever, is a time to do what God challenges us to do. Test him and see if he doesn’t protect your income and throw open the floodgates of heaven to bless us.

No, we don’t give just to get something from God. We do so because he tells us to tithe.

But, when we tithe, we can trust God to continue providing for our needs so that we can continue to help others.

If you don’t tithe, please consider sending in a donation to the church you normally attend. If you do tithe, join me in sending a few extra dollars to those churches and groups on the front lines of serving families during this stressful period.

Of course, atheist groups are working hard to ensure that no churches or religious organizations qualify for government support after governments ordered the institutions closed.

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Greg Gerber

A native of Wisconsin who moved to Arizona in 2009, Greg Gerber is a DODO -- Dad of Daughters Only -- to three grown daughters. He worked as a journalist for many years before pursuing a career as a faith-based writer, author, coach and speaker. Greg is the author of Pornocide: How Lust is Killing Your Faith, Stealing Your Joy and Destroying Your Life.

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