In Zimbabwe, paying tithe in kind reminds Adventists about the blessings of giving back.
Published on: 06-17-2021
Some time ago, church leaders from the General Conference (GC) and the Southern Africa-Indian Ocean Division (SID) of the Seventh-day Adventist Church sent out a message to church members across the region. In their message, they thanked church members for remaining faithful in supporting the ministry of God’s church by returning tithe and giving offering, even amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Juan Prestol, then treasurer of the GC, wrote that “offering is an important way of showing our love to God while supporting the advancement of His mission.”
As the message spread across the SID, a couple in Zimbabwe felt compelled to return their tithe in kind. As a result, they invited the Zimbabwe Central Union Conference stewardship leaders to come and collect God’s tithe at their plot in Vungu, in Lower Gweru. Out of the 31 cows they had, Mr. and Mrs. Mpofu returned three of them as tithe and gave an extra bull as an offering. This gesture not only impressed and inspired the visiting church elders but the community as well. “As a result, some local farmers have indicated that they too would like to return their tithe and offering in this manner,” regional leaders reported.
Mr. Mpofu said it’s a joy to serve the Lord while they still have the energy and zeal. “What moved us not just to give our tithe, but also a bull as a mission offering, is the current GC Strategic plan of I Will Go! That challenged us very much because the Bible says everything belongs to God, and we are His stewards,” Mr. Mpofu said. Mrs. Mpofu echoed her husband’s message, adding, “Scriptures tell us that there is a great blessing in giving. We need to trust God with His promises.”
District pastor Ocean Ncube said that the decision of the Mpofus is an excellent example for every other Adventist leader and member. “We must emulate the spirit of giving, as God also gave us His only begotten Son,” Ncube emphasized. “[It is the reason] church members are encouraged to support the mission of God, by not just returning tithe and offering but [by] doing so faithfully and regularly,” he said.