Be sure to set aside a tenth of all that your fields produce each year. Deuteronomy 14:22

When it came to offerings, Canaanite cults and other pagan religions functioned in the opposite way to how God intended his people to act. In pagan religions, the devotees perform rituals and made sacrifices to entice their gods to bless them with fruitfulness for the coming season. However, God’s people were to present a tithe of the fruitfulness that they had already received. The tithe is a proportional response to what God had given. It was an act of gratitude, not an obligation.

It isn’t necessary to entice God to bless us, not by the works of our hands, our rituals, or the sacrifices we make because he desires to bless. Our Western mindset struggles to come to terms with a God who longs to bless when culture tells us, we don’t get anything for nothing.

A further difficulty is that God doesn’t bless us according to our timetable or agenda, so we often miss his blessings. We are so busy trying to make things happen in our way and in our time, we don’t allow God to bless us.

How do we become better recipients of God’s blessings?

We express gratitude for the many blessings we have already received— forgiveness, abundant life, eternal security.

We develop the godly attitudes that are outlined in the Beatitudes. We learn to be humble, authentic, compliant to God’s ways, hungry for God, forgiving, develop integrity, pursue peace, and have courage (Matthew 5:3-10).

It’s a difficult list, but such is God’s desire to bless us that he will enable us to grow in these attitudes, as we seek him.