You Can’t Beat God In Giving
No Matter How Hard You Try!
"Do you trust God? Do you believe in His word? God's word suggests that you can’t beat Him in giving, no matter how hard you try. Do you really believe that? If so, try Him, and trust His word.” With this call for the offering, a young woman challenged the congregation: “Give God all the money you have in your pockets or purses.”
Deborah Turner, along with her husband Louis, a pastor from Bellingham, Washington, were attending their son’s graduation ceremonies at Oakwood College on Sabbath, May 8, 2004, when this unusual challenge was made. She thought about the money in her purse and her plans to buy something for herself with some of it. Almost instantly the Holy Spirit touched her heart, impressing her to “give God a try.” She accepted the challenge and gave all the money she had with her.
The next day, graduation Sunday, her son told her he was to receive a refund for an overpayment on his student account. On Monday they went to the student finance office and were amazed to receive a check in the amount of $2,100. Of this amount, $800 was their money, the amount they had overpaid. “You tell me, says Deborah. “Can you beat God in giving. No! No! No! No matter how hard you try.”
The next weekend, during the Regional Convocation held near Auburn, Washington, Deborah told the audience about her experience at Oakwood College. She challenged the audience to give all the money they had with them. The Holy Spirit was working in the auditorium in the same way it had worked the week before. Needless to say, when the offering was counted, it was the largest offering the convocation had ever received.
The Rest of the Story
Mattie Carrington and her husband Andrew, from Renton, Washington, were in the audience at the Regional Convocation that Sabbath. At first Mattie was reluctant to give all the funds she and Andrew had brought with them. However, after hearing Deborah’s testimony, she changed her mind. They pooled their cash and gave $72. Later that night, they joked with the Turners about not having any cash to spend on the items which were being sold in the gym.
On Monday she went to the mailbox and found two checks. One was for $40 and the other for $152.22, but she thought nothing of it. On Tuesday she went to the mailbox and found a money order for $300. On Wednesday she received a letter from the bank indicating that their account was being credited in the amount of $50. She called the bank to ask why and was told that the money order she had deposited was for $350 and not the $300 she had noted on the deposit slip. On Thursday she went to the mailbox and found a refund check from their insurance company for $20, apparently an overpayment.
She still did not connect these windfalls with the offering she had given at the Convocation until she called the person who had sent them the $350. When she asked why the money had been sent, the response was, "You can't beat God's giving, no matter how you try." At that point it all became clear to her. By the very next Sabbath, she and her husband had received a total of $562.22, all of which was unexpected. “We had emptied our pockets of all the cash we had and God blessed us with more than seven times what we gave," Mattie says. “God's math is different from ours. He just wants us to step out in faith and prove Him. Indeed, we cannot beat God's giving, no matter how hard we try.”
Derrick and Linda Foxworth from Portland were also blessed at the Convocation in a way they weren't expecting. Linda was on the stage singing with the praise team and Derrick was in the audience, sitting with Linda’s parents. When Linda returned to her seat, he asked her if she had the checkbook. She said she had left the checkbook at home.
Half listening to Deborah’s challenge, Derrick and Linda quickly tried to figure out what to do. Since they had only their "traveling cash" with them, they had to make a decision between giving the twenties they had or just a five dollar bill. The Holy Spirit impressed them to empty their wallet and give it all. They gave the twenties, the five, everything.
The following Tuesday when Derrick opened the mail, he called, "Linda!" She came into the room and saw Derrick staring at the mail. There was a check for $800, an insurance refund they did not know was due them. Derrick said, "Remember, the lady said we would be blessed. She said she couldn't promise that we would be blessed in the same way she had been blessed, but we would be blessed."
The next day it was Linda’s turn. She opened the mail and found another refund check, this one from their dentist for $200, an overpayment. Linda says, “The Lord blessed us with $1,000 in one week merely for giving everything we had. While the monetary portion is nice, we have had a greater spiritual blessing by seeing what the Lord can do if we obey and do His will.” Linda also says that they will remember to take their checkbook to next year’s convocation.
Deborah concludes, “Please do not misunderstand. The miracle was not in the amount of money received, but in the individual blessing each person received by trusting God that particular morning. The yielding to the influence of the Holy Spirit and the peace that came with a complete surrender was life changing. I am sure others were changed as well. You can never beat God in giving, no matter how hard you try!”