I have been thinking about the Golden Text in this year's Thanksgiving Bible Lesson. It reads: "Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not opoen you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there will not be room enough to receive it." That is Malachi 3:10.
Malachi is the last book of the Old Testament. At the beginning of chapter three God promises this: Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me." This book is meant for two types of religious people, the sincerely religious who have lost heart through the prevailing wickedness of the times and are beginning to question God's goodness, and the wordly and covetous, who are religious only in name. Malachi was an advanced thinker who recognizes Jehovah as a universal God, a Father of Nations. Jehovah has promised that He will come to His temple but that promise had not yet been fulfilled.
As I studied our Golden Text it occured to me that it is a two-parter. The first part tells us what we are supposed to do and the second part tells what God will do for us. Now, why would God open the windows of heaven and pour us out more than we can recieve if we have already filled the storehouse?
I think we are to be doing our part, that is tithing. Giving God ten percent. Of what? What can we give God when He already has all and is the sourve of all good? Our love, our gratitude, our praise, our attention. The day has 24 hours, do I devote 2.4 hours giving God my undivided attention? Hmmmmm. I spend a lot of time praying and studying. 2.4hours? Well, if you factor in all the times I hold conversations with Him, all the time I intentionally get quiet and listen for His direction, it might be that much. Am I bringing all that into the 'storehouse'? Does storehouse represent my spiritual consciousness, my reflection of divine Mind? Am I taking time each day to bring those thoughts and ideas to thought? It is a worthy goal.
God doesn't need what I bring, He looks for my cheerful giving of those things. It's a bit like Cain and Abel, which gift was respected for its purity, which was rejected because it was not given with a full heart but grudgingly. The windows of heaven are wide open and God is constantly blessing His children. Abundantly. Overflowing. More than we can comprehend.
I guess that is what Thanksgiving is all about, that giving back to God with a willing and grateful heart. Remembering to say thank you. Following the book of Malachi are the four gospels and their good news. God has opened the windows of heaven and sent us the Messiah, His own Son. It is good to be reminded of this as we round the corner from Thanksgiving and Christmas looms on the horizon.