Many have looked at prosperity solely from a financial perspective, thus to prosper in this narrow vision of things one looks only to the external signs of wealth, and consequently soon the focus becomes on material possessions or the fixed idea of having them. Inevitably this arrangement leads to feelings of envy, greed and selfishness. It also creates an enormous distance between us and the needs of our fellow men, including our families, as time is not allocated any longer to what matters most, but to what we want the most.
What about spiritual prosperity?
We can gain a clear understanding that we are children of our Heavenly Father and that He has a plan of happiness for us. Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ and our faithfulness, we can return to Him. An understanding that He loves us and gave us commandments to help us face the adversities of life will guide us to a path of gratitude for everything we have. Even when we have little material possessions we will have a sense of gratitude for the things that matter most:
- Our families
- Membership in the Lord's Church
- The messages of living prophets
- The scriptures
Just to mention a few of the many blessings we can savour in mortality.
As we long each day to became closer to our Heavenly Father we increase our desire to keep all the commandments and consequently we grow spiritually.
In Doctrine and Covenants 29:34 it states, "Wherefore, verily I say unto you that all things unto me are spiritual, and not at any time have I given unto you a law which was temporal; neither any man, nor the children of men; neither Adam, your father, whom I created."
The Law of Tithing is a matter of faith, not of money. It is a spiritual law, and when observed it reveals our spiritual prosperity and our concern for the welfare of others, it is an expression of love for God and gratitude for everything we have received.
Every time I prepare my donation slip to give my tithing and other offerings to the Lord, I feel great joy that I am contributing to the establishment of the Kingdom of God. I know I am helping those that have even less than I. Above all, I feel I am truly in the path of prosperity because I grow spiritually, and grow less attached to things that are temporary, and experience greater faith in the promises of prophets of old and of today:
"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 open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it."
"I encourage you to accept the Lord’s invitation to “prove [Him] now herewith.” Pay your tithing. Unlock the windows of heaven. You will be abundantly blessed for your obedience and faithfulness to the Lord’s laws and commandments." Elder Robert D. Hales, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, October 2002, General Conference.
Throughout my life, because of the Law of Tithing I have gained an added appreciation for the need to make and keep a family budget, and for a wise use of the resources that we have been blessed with. Because of this law I have been blessed to discern more clearly what is most important for me and my family.
Tithing is not a law of money, but a law of faith and gratitude and is certainly one that will put us in the path of prosperity. Of that I testify in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.