Several years ago I wanted to refinance my home. Refinancing is a difficult and challenging process on its own, let alone adding the red tape that comes with being a veteran. However, I knew if I wanted to refinance I would have to buckle down and do what was needed. A part of the refinancing process includes providing a list of income and expenses to the bank. After gathering the required information, I sent it to the bank. When the bank reviewed my documents, they saw that one of the line items I listed was paying monthly tithes. When the bank saw that I was paying tithes they went ballistic! The account manager told my VA representative that unless I stopped paying tithes, the bank was not going to refinance my home. They said I needed to make a decision; if I wanted my home refinanced I had to stop paying tithes.
My first reaction when the VA told me this was I panicked. Then fear set in. Every thought you could imagine went through my mind. On the one hand, I knew how badly I needed to refinance, and on the other hand, I didn’t feel comfortable with not paying tithes. I needed to make a wise decision, so I contacted a trusted friend and believer. I told them the situation, and they asked me one question. They asked, “Do you trust the Lord?” I stopped in my tracks, and I said, “Yes.” Immediately I knew what to do. My friend did not have to say anymore. I knew that if I wasn’t going to trust the Lord then what was my faith walk all about?
This situation taught me the importance of having people around me that I trusted to help me stay on track. That one question helped me reset my thinking and get past the fear and panic. I realized that seeking advice from either a non-believer or a weak, uncommitted Christian could result in bad advice. After talking with my friend, I called the bank and told them, I would continue to pay tithes. Immediately after making the phone call, I felt at peace. Suddenly I knew in my spirit this was the answer the Lord was waiting to hear. He wanted to see me trust in him. After the call, I did not hear from the bank for almost three weeks. Then one afternoon I received a phone call that my refinance request was approved. I was ecstatic!
Standing in faith often takes every ounce of courage you have. It tests every aspect of who you are. When panic and fear set in, thank God, I had the wherewithal to contact a trusted friend. Many times, you can feel like you are standing on that ledge alone. A little push in either direction could have dramatic results. By standing in faith, I received my refinance request. I believe that if I had decided not to pay tithes, instead of receiving a phone call that my refinance request was approved, I would’ve received a phone call that it was denied.
As a new year begins, I encourage you to trust the Lord and stand in faith.