Several years ago, my wife and I were having dinner with some dear friends from Roanoke named Nathan and Kristan. They were sharing about their recent trip to Central America to visit their missionary friends. They gushed about the incredible work this missionary was doing in the jungles, and they also shared about his struggle to reach the mountain villages. And then Nathan casually said,
“while we were down there, we felt God leading us to buy him a dirt bike, so we emptied our emergency fund and bought him one.”
This story may not seem overly remarkable unless you know Nathan and Kristan. They are not wealthy people and just making the trip down to encourage their friends was a sacrifice. Additionally, they are Dave Ramsey fanatics and had just recently gotten rid of all their debts and established their emergency fund. Years of financial scraping and clawing had brought them to that moment. And at that moment, they chose generosity over security. They chose to give instead of keep.
In my heart, I believe that there will be a family who will come to Nathan and Kristan in heaven to thank them. They will say, “without your generosity there would have been no motorbike. And without the motorbike, there would have been no missionary. And without the missionary, there would have been no gospel. And without the gospel we would be lost forever, so thank you, Nathan and Kristan, for everything.”
I am still moved by their example of generosity. They tested God with their emergency fund, and even to this day he has been so faithful to their family. The tithing project is about far more than just giving, it’s about helping us to connect to God’s design for our lives. We cannot possibly know how God will use our generosity, but we can know for certain that he will use it. There is a special type of joy and blessing that comes from sacrificing deeply for God, and we want that for every single one of you. As you give, you build a deep connection to the mission, and there is a unique blessing that you experience when that mission advances because of your generosity.