Monday, July 09, 2007

The Value of Tithing

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For several months, I had been tithing just over 10 percent of my income to church and therefore to God, even when my cash inflow appeared to be drying up. It was and continues to be great practice in stretching my prosperity consciousness. When I give from the heart and not out of obligation, it not only expands my prosperity consciousness, but it also strengthens the fabric of trust that I will always be provided for. Here are some of the most amazing gifts I've received in recent months because I was in the giving and receiving mode:

1. An international newspaper ran a full page article about my aviation achievements - this form of PR came about unexpectedly from a woman who was in the audience at one of my speaking engagements. You can see it here.

2. Howard Putnam, a former CEO of Southwest Airlines and Mark Sanborn, a best-selling business author, both provided me with powerful video testimonials about my professional speaking services, giving me instant credibility.

3. Out of the blue, a subscriber sent a $100 donation through PayPal.

4. This same subscriber appears to have turned herself into a divine channel with timely ideas and suggestions because she keeps emailing them to me at just the right time!

5. A first-time client who booked me for a speaking engagement this Fall immediately hired me for another event in Las Vegas in 2008, sight unseen. This is someone who was hiring me solely on the basis of my website, without seeing or hearing me give a speech (except for the short video clips on that site). Apparently, she had enough faith to hire me for their second event in 2008! You have to wonder, how did that happen?

6. Through a referral, I met a wonderful woman who is so excited about my personal story and what I have to offer that she's already told her vast network of business and personal friends about me. This could very well lead to opportunities that might not have otherwise manifested had I not been in the giving and receiving mode.

7. The local news station offered to come to my church to interview Ryan Mathews and I about the "Flight to Hartford," giving our project more exposure than we expected. You can see it here (be sure to scroll down to the end of the article to click "Play Video").

8. Almost $8,000 was raised for the "Flight to Hartford" project. It happened easily and effortlessly, without the need for advertising or time consuming solicitation-type phone calls.

9. Several people from the blogsphere have taken it upon themselves to act as my virtual PR manager including but not limited to: Michael Werner, Aaron Potts, Rajesh Setty, Stephen Shapiro, Sharmaine, Howard Putnam, to name a few. They have been inspired to spread the word through their blogs, websites or electronic newsletters, all of which have resulted in more exposure for "Adversity University" as well as for my speaking, writing and flying endeavors. Called viral marketing, this is something that is completely out of anyone's realm of control but happens in a most magical way. It is a great example of God and the universe doing something for you that you cannot do for yourself - it happens completely on its own without you needing to do much of anything other than being true to yourself. They want to do it because they love you for who you are, not what others expect you to be. Gosh, imagine that!

Despite all of these opportunities that came my way, I have to admit that I somehow fell back into lack consciousness and stopped tithing for a few weeks. I told myself that I was giving time and energy to the church by volunteering to mow their lawn, serve as vice chairman of their multi-million dollar foundation, among other things. While giving back in this way is certainly a form of tithing, I really believe that when you give away money, it sets the universe in motion in a much more powerful way.

Why? Because the green stuff is something that isn't easily given away for some of us, especially if we are faced with one or more of the following circumstances: we aren't sure of where our next dollar is coming from, we've been hit with a major form of adversity (i.e. divorce, loss of job, major illness, etc) or if we've been taught that money is scarce. It is especially during these times that when you give away money, you are making a strong, blind declaration of faith to God and the universe that not only will you pull through hard times but you will also get back what you gave many times over.

Hey, anyone can mow the lawn. Anyone can serve time on the board of directors. That's easy stuff. But it's when you change your way of thinking and start tithing in total faith, the more it comes back to you in some form or shape. A lot of people find this to be hard to do because it is an emotional thing for them. They fear they won't have enough to pay the bills or whatnot.

Here's how to overcome this......

Give from the heart and from a place of joy; not out of obligation and/or manipulation.

Several months ago I wrote a couple of articles about the power of giving: "Greatest Secrets to Unblocking the Flow of Prosperity," and "Giving Really Does Lead to Receiving." Yes, I refer back to them from time to time to remind myself of the powerful spiritual law of giving and receiving. Like you, I am always a work in progress. I occasionally lapse back into my old way of thinking. It does happen.

Then yesterday I had the good fortune to stumble onto a most amazing YouTube video, which inspired me to write "What's Your Gift to the World?" This act instantly put me back on track and singlehandedly restored my faith. Almost without thinking, I whipped out my blue checkbook out from beneath a pile of rubble on my desk and joyfully began to tithe again.

It was the most amazing moment for me - imagine yours truly waving a checkbook in the air, excitedly proclaiming, "God, I have absolute faith in you!" Shhh...don't tell anybody about this - they'll think I'm crazy and put me in the nut house.

The point? We sometimes fall back into our old way of thinking until something magical happens, transporting us back into the giving mode again. If you have a hard time giving away money, why not start small? Give $5 or $10 or whatever amount you're comfortable with and give to a person, place or organization that has provided you with some kind of spiritual nourishment/encouragement. Regardless of where you're getting that from, give back without expecting anything in return. Just do it.

The more you practice this, the easier it gets. It's taken many checks, week after week, to reprogram my mindset and go from lack consciousness to one of prosperity. And you know what? It really works if you keep at it. You've seen examples of some of my own experiences. Why not see for yourself - especially when you are experiencing tough times - you'll be amazed.

Food for thought: Are you tithing your money to a person, place or organization that continually provides you with vital spiritual nourishment?
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