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Tithing Time

Painting of Martin Luther

Painting of Martin Luther (not to be confused with Glen Steinson)

Sometimes we think “out loud,” and I guess it happens sometimes when we write, too.  I sent an e-mail to my friend Glen Steinson about a free software add-on from the American Bible Society that allows webmasters to have an entire Bible passage pop up over their page.  (You can try it by clicking on this link — 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18.)  My friend and fellow ECA member Jerry Johnson of Christian Concourse Ministries had sent the information to me, and I found it so helpful that I wanted to share it with another Christian webmaster and podcaster; hence my e-mail to Glen.

But while writing the note to Glen (who interviewed me on his podcast a while back), another thought spilled out.  Glen’s podcast, Stewardship Weekly, deals with being responsible servants over all that the Lord gives us — not just money and financial assets, but also our time and talents.  And it was time that was on my mind.  I have learned the hard way (on some subjects I am a very slow learner) that quality time spent in prayer each day is to time what tithing is to money. And so I tacked this to the end of my “try this software plug-in” note:

You know how there’s “never enough money” until you start tithing, and then 90% goes farther than 100% used to? I’ve found the same holds true with prayer. No, not the drive-through-the-heavenly-McDonalds sort of praying (though sometimes that’s necessary); I mean the real wait-in-quiet-before-God-without-distraction kind of praying. More time praying, more time to do things. Martin Luther is reported to have said, “I pray two hours every day; and days that I know will be very busy, I pray three hours.” (I don’t bat in that league, but I aspire to do so!) I suppose you can think of it as “tithing time.” Never mind “Modern Math”; this is based on the same Divine Math that also teaches “die to live,” “more blessed to give than to receive”, and other Advanced Kingdom Math Concepts that confound the worldly viewpoint!

Anyway, Glen picked that up and ran with it for his latest Stewardship Weekly podcast episode, injecting those thoughts with some of his own around 14:30 into the podcast.  It’s worth a listen.  By the way, I couldn’t locate the source of that Martin Luther quote, but I did find a small treatise of Luther’s called A Simple Way to Pray (for Master Peter, the Barber), in which he states simply:

It is a good thing to let prayer be the first business of the morning and the last at night. Guard yourself carefully against those false, deluding ideas which tell you, “Wait a little while. I will pray in an hour; first I must attend to this or that.” Such thoughts get you away from prayer into other affairs which so hold your attention and involve you that nothing comes of prayer for that day.


Amen to that!

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