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The Last Dollar Test
by Annie Glasel
3/31/2009 / Christian Living
Ever taken a "What Color is Your Balloon" career assessment test? Among the many exercises is the "what if." "What if you had a million dollars to invest in a project, what kind of project would you choose?" 'What if you didn't have to work for a living, how would you spend your time?"
These questions supposedly remove the "practicality" from our thinking and help us get in touch with our passion, our truest dream extending from "who we really are."
Alas, these tests are flawed because human are not often honest with ourselves. In this imaginary state, people tend to think more highly of themselves and come up with noble, grand plans to 'change the world' for the better by helping those in need. (I know I did).
In real life, few people ever realize this hypothetical "what if" and test if they actually live up to their honorable plans. However, many will reach a place where they are faced with their "last dollar." This is the "What if you only had a dollar left. What would you do with it?" test.
"The last dollar test" is much more effective in exposing one's true character. And I guess that is why God uses this test more frequently than the "what if you had unlimited resources" test.
Some people spend that last dollar calling a family member (maybe to ask for help). Some may drive through a fast food place for their last dollar meal. Some buy one last hit of their addiction. Some despair and do nothing with it. Because what can a dollar do these days?
In the Bible, the last dollar often represented hope, deliverance and the point of greatest blessing one can ever hope. The last dollar was also a declaration of a person's allegiance to God.
In the Book of Exodus and Leviticus, God gave Moses specific instructions on atonement money. This is the money that every male above age 12 paid to the temple as a ransom for his soul. It was set at half shekel; rich or poor, every man gave exactly that much for his atonement. How much is half shekel? Well, in today's conversion rate, it is about ten cents U.S. (With that math, one dollar could actually ransom ten people).
The widow did not even have a dollar. She had last morsels of oil and flour. The prophet Elisha, who was a stranger to her, came and asked to have her last meal. She obeyed. Because of her obedience, when famine struck her homeland, she and her son always had oil and flour in her house.
Who could forget the woman with two mites (less than half a shekel). In giving her last two mites, her act was recorded for generations to come. She earned praises from Jesus. Those two mites represented her everything; giving them showed her total devotion to God. It said that her faith in God far exceeded her fear. She literally put her money where her mouth was. While many worshiped with prayers, she worshiped with all that she owned. Her priority was clear in that one act: God first, God last, God everything.
Today the world is going through economic turmoil. Leaders are talking recession, depression and slow recovery. Many churches are suffering financially. Congregation giving and tithing waxes and wanes.
When we tithe out of our abundance, it can quickly become a ritual. But when we tithe out of our poverty, we are making a real statement.
Many of us will come to a "last dollar test." Our truest passion will emerge from this test. We will either be praised or we will be ashamed.
So who will have your last dollar? You, the world or God?
I've written to ease my pain; I've written to hear my voice; I've written for vanity; I've written for sanity; I've written for fun; I've written for laughs; I've written for me; I've written for money. But until I write for God, this talent is for naught.
If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be! Click here and TRUST JESUS NOW
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