Matthew 5:13-16 (NRSV)
13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot. 14 “You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. 15 No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.”
I very much wanted to tithe, give my 10%. When I got together with my husband we did a financial class and budgeted ourselves, and got it together, agreed on everything… except tithing. My unbelieving husband was not about to give 10% of his money to a church, or any christian or religious organisation. Or any one else for that matter. He’d grown up poor and worked very hard all of his life. Giving a hand out here or there, or helping someone he knew, as long as it didn’t impact him, that was good enough.
As a Christian, we have a passion to give until it hurts! So I felt quite deflated. I was relegated to being a bad Christian because my husband didn’t want to tithe. Oh that drained me. So I took it to God.
Ephesians 5:22-23 (NRSV) 22 “Wives, be subject to your husbands as you are to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife just as Christ is the head of the church, the body of which he is the Savior.”
Oh did this verse kill me! Subject to my husband, to some mere man, to a walking penis!!! Eek! Every feminist urge inside me cried out, “Hell No!” Then I prayed…. and God humbled me. And through much prayer and reflection I finally found my answer. 10% isn’t about money, although that is needed to, it’s about what you have. I don’t work, I don’t make the money, but because I don’t work, I am able to stay at home with my daughter, and I have TIME.
I was already doing it! I was giving of my time to others, graciously. Now I could do it with purpose. I can sit here and say, “Hey God, let me be your hands and feet today, who needs some help?” It gets easier. The more I pray, the more I am drawn to and just “know” who needs my help and what they might need. Little bits here and there. I’m able to be the LIGHT for God! I help everyone, anytime, any way I can. I don’t over extend myself, cause I’m not doing it for me. And I learned a long time ago how to say NO. And because I’m lead by God, I don’t feel guilty about saying no.
I am also alway acutely aware that I am the salt of the earth. You see, I’ve taken lithium for years. One of the fantabulous things about lithium is that it is a salt, and it will replace the salt in your body, which isn’t good cause its also toxic. So besides drinking enough water a day to drown a goldfish I also have to eat enough salt. I know when I need more because my food tastes bland. And in that wonder salt shaking moment I am constantly reminded that God is calling me to be the salt of the earth, to be the light.
Thanks to my husbands unrelenting stubbornness, I found an amazing way to be that light.