Hope for your financial life and beyond

God Wants the First Bite of Pie

Hidden Nuggets Series #42 – “Honor the Lord with your possession, and with the firstfruits of all your increase; so your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will overflow with new wine.” – Proverbs 3:9-10

blueberry cheescake and hot coffeeEver let someone else take the first bite off a piece of your pie?

I don’t understand it but a psychological thrill ride occurs when I slide a fork through the tip of a triangular shaped slice of pie. It’s as though I’m embarking on a slow, taste sensation journey, the first step of which is to destroy the perfectly symmetrical geometric figure.

When someone else takes the first bite, the whole pie eating experience is diminished. The rest of the piece doesn’t taste quite the same. When I’m polite enough to let this happen, I’m totally bored eating the rest of it. It’s as though my mind is saying, “Eh…it’s just pie.”

A part of me is happy for the person I gave that first bite to. I know they appreciate it. The look of pleasure on their face as the piece dissolves in their mouth gives that away.

Deep down, I’m envious and selfish. It was my pie after all. Shouldn’t I enjoy the pleasures of the first bite?

That’s right…it’s all about my needs.

How can I stop thinking like that?

By developing a plan to give as I go through life, starting with giving to God of my increase as the verse above instructs.

Yes, it would be great to have the whole pie to myself. I could satisfy many desires with it. However, I’d miss the joy of giving and seeing others experience pleasure based on my generosity.

Potential Benefits of Giving

And who knows? What if as I give more and more, I develop a spirit of thankfulness for what has been left over? After all, the rest of the pie is still pretty good and does help satisfy my hunger pains. Receiving 90% of the pie would still be very useful to meet my daily needs.

Furthermore, who can tell the benefits that might come back to me for being generous to someone else?

What if someone along the way to whom I give bakes me another whole pie? I would be getting back more than I gave out.

Perhaps I see how God is using my generosity and that brings some inner peace and humility.

The more peace and blessings I receive, the more likely my giving will increase over time.

So sacrificing that first bite of pie isn’t so bad after all. That’s what the Maker of the pie desires.

Is your budget allowing for giving? Do you give off the top, from the first of your monthly increase? Or do you wait until the end and give what is left over? What’s your favorite kind of pie?

Image by samuiblue at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Next Post: Why I’m So Excited to Spend Money Again on Cable TV

Prior Post: The Fear of Spending Again Once the Debt Is Gone

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Comments

  1. It’s such a struggle for me right now to give. With that being said, I still do it. I feel like I receive a lot of grace and patience when giving even while I’m not necessarily in my ideal place, because He deserves it no matter where I am. When I’m particularly cash-strapped, I make sure to give of my time as well, many people forget about that kind of giving.

    • I’ve been there before Lisa so I understand the emotions. I continually have to remind myself that He owns it all anyway and I’m just a steward of His resources. God knows your heart and is more concerned in however you give, whether financially or with your time, that it’s done willingly and cheerfully.

  2. I’m not sure about the 10% but I do believe in giving first, that’s why I have my charitable donation to my church deducted off my paycheque straight away.

  3. Elizabeth says:

    Tithing is such an essential thing to do. It’s in fact what caused me to do a 360 on views in life & with my finances. I am loving it. So yes, tithing category in my budget. And while I temporarily put regular financial giving on hold, I offer my time and ask God to use me for his will. And when extra little windfalls come in, they go to charity.

    I believe tithing is one of the best financial lessons out there. I definitely have the drive to make more in order to give more.

    • I’ve found giving such a blessing in my life…to know you are impacting other people’s lives. We put our tithing line right at the top of our budget forms before we look at any other expenses. Thanks for sharing Elizabeth!

  4. The adage ‘you can’t outgive God’ is so true. There have been times that I felt like the widow giving my last cents to the church, but even then I know He was faithful in seeing us through. Sometimes the results were significant, like the time we were provided with a new car or when a friend bought the wrong size school pants for her son and didn’t want the hassle of returning them but gave them to my son instead (the year that buying school clothes was going to be tough – hardly coincidental). Other times felt dire, such as the time years ago I had exactly $20.00 left for groceries, but with careful planning along with items stored in the freezer we were fine (actually we felt rich that week – meals were all made from scratch and well-planned). God saw us through then and I know He continues today. In fact, just today there was enough left over from paying bills to fund about 1/3 of next summer’s trip.
    Are we perfect? Not by a long shot – there have been times that our giving was lacking, but I am thankful that those days are few compared to the years we’ve been married. Your analogy is very significant: offering a bite to someone may result in being the recipient of something whole. I do want to say that we do not tithe with the expectation of getting something better in return. We tithe because we believe in God’s faithfulness and promises such as that found in Proverbs 3:9-10.

    • “…we do not tithe with the expectation of getting something better in return.” Right…the Bible never says we automatically receive items/money back in return for tithing, regardless of what many modern day pastors say. It does say we will be blessed for tithing and I think that’s mostly internal…in our hearts. Thanks for that testimony Karen!

  5. Done by Forty says:

    Giving is our toughest financial issue these days. We’ve started giving regularly to our church, finally, but we are not at 10% of our net…let alone our gross. Would love to hear if you know of any good books on the subject.

    • Elizabeth says:

      The Blessed Life by pastor Robert Morris is a great book.

    • I wouldn’t beat yourself up over not giving 10%. You are on the right track in that you are giving something regularly. That’s a start. Plus it sounds like you want to progress to that 10% level over time. God knows your heart…I don’t think he would be displeased with a cheerful giver.

  6. Uche@Wisdom For Wealth says:

    Amazing brain,

    I think the reason people find it hard to give God the first bite of the pie is that they don’t trust him wholeheartedly.

    When you judge God to be faithful, dependable and reliable you would NEVER find it hard to give him the best.

    Just trust him folks he is faithful.

  7. Right now the only kind of financial donating has been non-regular occurrences. Something like the typhoon in the Philippines, or contributing to a fund to help a family struggling with the cost of cancer treatment…stuff like that. My fave pie is pumpkin, and I don’t mind if someone takes the first bite. 🙂

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