Honor the LORD with your wealth and with the best part of everything you produce. Then he will fill your barns with grain, and your vats will overflow with good wine. (Proverbs 3:9–10, NLT)
Proverbs 3 is a chapter filled with promises of provision and hope, but it is also a chapter filled with conditions. "If you do..., you will receive..." Verses 9 and 10 focus our attention directly on our finances.
The following letter was found in a baking-powder can wired to the handle of an old pump that offered the only hope of drinking water on a very long and seldom-used trail across Nevada's Amargosa Desert:
"This pump is all right as of June, 1932. I put a new sucker washer into it and it ought to last five years. But the washer dries out and the pump has got to be primed. Under the white rock I buried a bottle of water, out of the sun and cork end up. There's enough water in it to prime the pump, but not if you drink some first. Pour about one-fourth and let her soak to wet the leather. Then pour in the rest medium fast and pump like crazy. You'll git water. The well has never run dry. Have faith. When you git watered up, fill the bottle and put it back like you found it for the next feller."
(signed) Desert Pete.
P.S. Don't go drinking the water first. Prime the pump with it and you'll git all you can hold
(Keith Miller and Bruce Larson, The Edge of Adventure)
The NASB translates these verses as, "Honor the LORD from your wealth and from the first of all your produce; So your barns will be filled with plenty."
For Israel, honoring the LORD with the first fruits of all one's crops was a way of expressing gratitude to Him for His provisions. Today, we honor God by giving the first fruits (10%) of our paycheck to God. It is a statement about our priorities as well, which are always reflected in our checkbook. Tithing is a constant reminder of who's in charge and who is watching over us. It is a practical way of stating that God is first in my life and I completely trust him in all things.
Many people don't want to let go of what is in their hand because they are afraid that God won't let go of what is in his. However, he has always been trustworthy and continues to out give us every time.