I came across a blog post about tithing while getting out of debt and it reminded me of a subject that I think many credit counselors get wrong, recommending that consumers stop tithing when facing financial problems.
Tithing is an act of faith or belief and it should never be about a fair weather gesture that you only engage in when times are good. As Justin Lukasavige said in his post,
I am not an authority on biblical matters, but I have been studying the bible for years and I know beyond a doubt that it does not say to stop giving to get out of debt. While the act of giving in and of itself is not what matters (it is actually the position of your heart), giving is still very important.
“But how can we give if we cannot even stay current on our monthly bills?” she asks. I am afraid I cannot answer that one. Here is what I do know. My wife Christine and I paid off over $45,000 of debt in just twelve months, all the while making only $60,000 in income. We tithed that entire year out of the fullness of our hearts: not because the bible says we have to, but because we wanted to be givers. [Read Post Here]
What I find wrong is for a credit counselor to make a decision about what is important and a core value to someone’s faith by not making an allowance for continued religious donations. If the tithe leaves the consumer is a difficult position then they should turn to their bible or other religious text to find what the word of their faith is. It would be wrong to sacrifice your faith purely to appease a creditor or your credit score.
But we can’t lose sight of the fact that there are other ways to tithe. Maybe you can’t afford to donate the recognized amount, well why can’t you give of your time instead? Isn’t a donation of your time and efforts to help your place of worship still have value and still be worthy of giving?
Tithing, isn’t it a matter of faith? If so, how can a credit counselor tell you your faith is not important to you?
Unless I’m looking at this issue cross-eyed, isn’t a tithe a debt you owe God and who do you think should be honored first, God or man. Would a debt owed to God be more important than a secured debt or unsecured debts like credit cards. What is your opinion?