"Can I put some money in this bank?" A fifteen-year-old boy in faded clothing stood before the teller's window of the bank in the little town of Barwick, Ga. His suit, badly worn, and his general appearance marked him as a tenant-former's son. Three layers of pasteboard thrust inside his ragged shoes kept his feet off the stone floor. "How much do you want to put in, John?" the banker asked. "Four dollars," the boy answered. "How do you want the account made out?" The man's voice was kindly, for he knew the boy as one of the regulars over at the Methodist Sunday School. "John W. Yates and Company," the youngster answered gravely. The banker peered through the grating with a quizzical look on his face. "Who's the Company?" he queried. "God," the boy replied very solemnly. "I got my first month's pay today, and I'm starting my tithe account. This is God's money." The life story of John Yates reads like that of a Horatio Alger hero. Bookkeeper, bank teller, cashier, army quartermaster whose checks for $10,000,000 were honored, insurance salesman, and finally general agent with a national reputation, this man has been described by two pastors of great churches as "one of the most valuable laymen in Methodism." His mother, Lillie Yates, entered into a new religious experience in a revival meeting, and out of deep poverty and struggle began to devote a tenth of all income to the Lord. Lillie Yates' old tithing account book lies in the lower drawer of her son's big walnut desk alongside of his New Testament. He has shown it to tens of thousands of people in audiences before whom he has preached the doctrine of stewardship. He says, "That book might not have the approval of a bigwig C.P.A., but I am sure our Heavenly Father calls it mighty good bookkeeping." This church and Sunday school worker says he owes it all to the fact that his mother was a tither; her devotion to that principle marked him for life.—Herald of Light.
A servant of God had a little girl whom he was eager should be brought up to serve Him. He wanted to teach her that we should give one-tenth of our possessions to God. One day he called her into his study, where he had arranged ten piles of money. And he said:
"You see, I have ten piles of money here. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine—they belong to me; but this tenth one belongs to God." The little girl said: "Oh, Father, are you going to keep all the nine for yourself?"—The King's Business.
I met at a small hotel and exchanged experiences with a certain lady who told me this: When she and her husband were married, they decided to tithe. Some years later her husband had raised some objections, saying now they had eight children to clothe, feed, and educate, and he thought they should not spare so much money. She suggested taking time to pray and think about the matter; and when it was mentioned again she told him she had made it a very special subject of prayer, and the more she prayed the more she thought of the promise they had claimed in the beginning (Mal. 3:10). They had brought the tithes and God had given the blessing. She feared that if they withheld the tithe, God would withhold the blessing. As far as she was concerned, she would prefer to go without some new clothes, and let the children go without some things they seemed to need, and to do without some things for the house, than to rob God of His tenth. Her husband's answer had been, "Oh, well, just as you say!" As the Christmas season approached she was thinking of a dinner for poor people to which for twenty years she had never missed making a contribution. Now business had been very bad for months, and their income small. As she washed dishes she talked to God about the matter, and then, like a flash, the question came, "Why not ask God to give it through someone else?" Drying her hands, she went into the little parlor and knelt down and talked with God again about it. She felt as sure of the money as though it were already in her hand That evening her eldest daughter came in and said, "Mother, hold your hand." Placing there three coins, she said, "Mrs. So-and-so sent that to you for your poor people. She said you would know better where to send it than she would." Leading her daughter into the little parlor, she knelt once more, not to ask for anything, but to offer her thanks to God for lifting the burden and filling her soul with joy and peace.—Serving and Waiting.
He came into the city one day after wheat harvest. Handing me fifty cents he said, "This is my tithe for the evangelistic team. I have just sold my wheat and received $5 for it." "But that means you have only $4.50 to live on until your crop of sweet potatoes is harvested!" "Yes, that is true, but you see this fifty cents is not mine. It belongs to my Heavenly Father, and I will not rob Him of that which is His." A week later he came in again and dropped twenty cents on my desk. "What is this?" I asked. "I have just sold my donkey for $2, and this twenty cents is not mine but the Lord's. I want it to go into the country evangelistic work."—C. R. Hills, in China's Millions.
A poster caught my eye today;
"Give ten per cent of all your pay
To buy war bonds. Come, do your share
To let our boys know that you care."
I thought of folks this country o'er
Who give a tenth, and even more,
For bonds; and that's as it should be.
But then this thought occurred to me:
Did these same folks in days before
This awful tragedy of war,
When asked to tithe unto the Lord, Say,
"That's more than I can afford"?—Courtesy Moody Monthly.
Abraham commenced it.
Jacob continued it.
Moses confirmed it.
Malachi commanded it.
Christ commended it.—Selected.
The Belmont Presbyterian Church, South, at Roanoke, Va., with a membership of 425, ascertained through unsigned slips dropped in the collection plate, that 137 of its members had a definite income averaging $18 per week. The pastor challenged this group to tithe for a period of three months. One hundred and eighteen signed such an agreement. Immediately the weekly offering rose from $50 to $216 per week, amounting on one Sunday to $450. At the end of three months, the people who said in good faith, "We cannot carry on," had contributed $2,626. Many said, "As long as God gives me any kind of income, I am going to pay Him the tenth." "Bring ye the tithe . . . prove Me . . . I will pour you out a blessing," saith the Lord.—From a Presbyterian Church financial suggestion.