"Who am I?"
"Just a man," I keep reminding myself. I am unable to control anything it would seem.
I look up and cry out "why?!"
Does He hear what we say?
Does my pain, the pain in my heart, somehow matter enough to Him that He could take it away?
Why doesn't He answer in the way that I want, WHEN I want? "Save my marriage. Save my family, Lord. Please. I have messed things up past the point that I, in my own flesh, can fix. I need YOU to fix it. Please God." How many times had I prayed that prayer on my knees... Pleading with God to somehow pull me out of this pit that I had dug for myself.
I had lost what was most valuable to me: My wife and son. She wanted nothing to do with me.
When I was able to see my son it was though I was reduced to more of a relative than his father. So much pain. I knew what the Bible said. I had read through it more then once growing up in a Christian home. Certain scriptures would come to mind and give me hope. Hope was almost gone though. One day it left altogether. I had reached bottom and knew it. I knew God was "there." I had seen Him in the lives that He changed. In the miracles that He did every day. It takes more faith to look around at the wonders of our world and say that it made ITSELF. No, I never doubted his EXISTENCE, only his
I felt at times that I was not IN IT... That somehow everyone else around me had it better.. They had the blessings and I didn't. Their prayers were being heard- while mine were being shoved onto some holy "filing cabinet," never to see the light of day. I would love to tell you that my breakthrough happened
right then. That my life turned around in a moment and God just delivered me in the most miraculous
But it didn't happen that way. Months went by and I kept moving on. But not in a good way... My faith was shaken... My heart that was once broken became a hard, crusted-over brick in my chest. Not able to give out a tender 'God breathed' love or even receive it. The scar tissue had become almost impenetrable. I vowed I would never hurt like that again. God had allowed everything to be taken from me. My family, my job, my "stuff"- all replaced with self-loathing and despair. Some days I wanted no more of this life. I didn't want to wake up to "this" in the morning. To know that I had to live in this feeling of being unloved. Forgotten. -But one day... There was a change- God gave forgiveness. He gave love. He gave it all so long ago. I had forgotten what His son had done for all of us. If His blood could save us from all the sins that we would EVER commit - why couldn't that same blood cover my life? My marriage? My family?
"Take heart, have faith for I have overcome the world."
“In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
I was ready to try once more. Even if the outcome was to live a SINGLE life for Jesus- I wanted that.
Did I want my wife back? Sure! My son? Of course... Did I have the faith to believe that it would happen? Wish that I could say I did, but I really didn't. I just knew that God COULD do all things. He WOULD be good and faithful in all things like His word said. —I needed to be faithful to HIM as well— I had stopped being faithful. I had always remembered to ask God for what I needed when I needed it—But what about remembering to give BACK to HIM? You may say, "Well God doesn't need anything. He's GOD. He made it ALL." While in a way this is true, this line of thinking is damaging and does not line up with the words He gave us to live by in scripture.
“Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, so that there may be food in My house, and test Me now in this,” says the Lord of hosts, “if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you a blessing until it overflows. Then I will rebuke the devourer for you, so that it will not destroy the fruits of the ground; nor will your vine in the field cast its grapes,” says the Lord of hosts. “All the nations will call you blessed, for you shall be a delightful land,” says the Lord of hosts. Malachi 3:10-12
He said TEST me - The ONLY place in the bible where He tells us to do that. You're probably asking, "What does GIVING have to do with restoring my marriage??"
More than you know.
He told us to be faithful in all things. Not just some things.
So how can He bless, restore and give to us what we need and desire when we literally have His hands bound with spiritual "handcuffs"?? The answer is: He can't. We are limiting Him and His working in our lives. And the tragedy is, we don't even know it. -What IS Tithing?? Tithing, as you read above, is
giving God’s portion of our income BACK to Him. What is His portion? His word tells us that 10% belongs to Him. That is all He asks. You may say, "I can't AFFORD to tithe."
I am here to tell you that you can't afford NOT to! It cost me everything, literally everything by stealing from God.
Malachi 3:7-9 explains what I did and what most of you are doing too.
“From the days of your fathers you have turned aside from My statutes and have not kept them. Return to Me, and I will return to you,” says the Lord of hosts. “But you say, ‘How shall we return?’ Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing Me! But you say, ‘How have we robbed You?’ In tithes and offerings. You are cursed with a curse, for you are robbing Me, the whole nation of you!
Ignore or dismiss His word and suffer the consequences. OR TEST God, just as He asked you to do and see how He will do MORE with 10% than YOU can do with the other 90% and how this will slam the door on the devourer who has stolen your life from you. Where does my tithe belong? Your tithe belongs where you are being spiritually "fed."
It could be your home church. It could be this ministry. Wherever that place is be FAITHFUL and give back to Him. I promise you will see big changes take place in your life.
I did in mine. When I started to give that 10% of what I had (which, being without a job was very little and took all of my faith) to this ministry, I starting to see things happen. Breakthroughs started to take place. It was a journey that started with God showing me this simple truth: You can't out give God and it’s foolish to steal from Him.
Jumping to the "good part" of my story... Yes, my marriage was restored. Yes, my wife and I are in love and are better people now. Yes, I am able to see my son everyday and I even know what his favorite cereal is!! These gifts I am so thankful for! I will never forget what started this chain-reaction of events and blessings. An easily, overlooked command. To "give and it shall be given." To entrust all "worldly wealth" to Him. So that He can show you things that are more precious than handfuls of diamonds or bars of pure gold. I am a rich man.
Not in earthly wealth, but in riches that will last forever.
I've been restored, living "happily ever after with my wife Kasey for 10 glorious years! God restored my marriage slowly but surely from the day I first stopped robbing God. My wife & I
remarried New Year’s Eve 2009.
Since then the Lord has blessed us with a second son, a boy who looks like my beautiful wife. Today we are more in love than ever, tithing still, and enormously blessed—far beyond what we deserve.