In the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, there are laws that the Lord has given us to associate with Him. By following these laws, we receive blessings, including the love of God and our neighbor. This allows us to develop the divine potential we deeply have within ourselves. By applying them, we literally become God‘s associates. This means we are an instrument in His hands to help His work to move forward. The word 'associate', of Latin root, means 'Join or connect together'. It is a word that is both strong and marvelous, for it enables us to understand that we are direct collaborators of Our Heavenly Father!
And since we are His 'associates' and He calls us to establish His kingdom on earth, then what is the best way do you think He will use to do it? One of the answers to this question is the law of tithing.
Tithing is « A tenth part of a person’s annual increase given to the Lord through the Church. Tithing funds are used to build churches and temples, to sustain missionary work, and to build the kingdom of God on earth... »
I remember the story of a young man who was in college, and on a Sunday morning he was in a dilemma. In fact, he had only the amount of his tithing. Although he had no food that day and no transportation fee; he decided to bring his tithing to his branch president. It was a great decision that he had made and this has forever engraved upon his heart. Later when we got home, he received money from his parents. This experience has become for him a living testimony of this declaration from the Lord Himself:
« But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. » (Matthew 6 :33).
Paying our tithing and fast offerings requires at least three things: Love, Faith and Sacrifice. Elder M. Russell Ballard, speaking of blessings connected to sacrifice taught:
« Sacrifice is a demonstration of pure love. The degree of our love for the Lord, for the gospel, and for our fellowman can be measured by what we are willing to sacrifice for them» (General Conference, April 1992, The Blessings of Sacrifice)
What really happens when a person pays tithing and obeys the law of fasting which means “To voluntarily refrain from eating or drinking ... for twenty-four hours for the purpose of drawing closer to the Lord and requesting His blessings 'and also pay a generous fast offering? By doing so, he/she learns to overcome selfishness, develops self-mastery and a greater love for God and his/her neighbor.
Life is a school where we learn many lessons that are sometimes difficult. We sometimes complain because we do not understand the manner of God. Yet what we call difficulties are perhaps stepping stones that allow us to develop our divine potential. By doing whatever Heavenly Father asks us to do and acting as a faithful and sincere associate, everything that will happen in our lives afterward will contribute to our own good. This attitude will allow us to see the various blessings of God in our lives.
Among the blessings we received, there are some touching our lives without even being noticed. Elder Bednar, in his talk « The Windows of Heaven » (General Conference, October 2013); reminds us of this great truth:
« As we live the law of tithing, we often receive significant but subtle blessings that are not always what we expect and easily can be overlooked…»
We are abundantly blessed when we pay our tithing and offerings. That is why the Lord is sending us this invitation:
“Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in my house; and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of Hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the fields, saith the Lord of Hosts.
And all nations shall call you blessed, for ye shall be a delightsome land, saith the Lord of Hosts. »
At the end of each year, in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, we have the privilege to have our family members to be with us to meet our bishop or branch president for the annual tithing settlement. Thanks to technology available today, the bishop or branch president can, in one click, print the report of all tithings and other donations brought to the Lord’s Storehouse during the year. This also shows us how the kingdom of the Lord is well organized.
In addition, the bishop or branch president has the opportunity to express his love for the family for the sacrifices made to help the kingdom of the Lord to move forward. This is a special occasion for the family as well to declare its status as a tithe payer and then receive inspired advice from an authorized servant of the Lord. This action will help strengthen our children's love for the Lord and motivate them to do the same throughout their lives.
President Joseph F. Smith declared:
« By this principle, it shall be known who is for the kingdom of God and who is against it. it shall be known whether we are faithful or unfaithful »
The Lord strongly relies on the Latter-day Saints for the building of His kingdom on earth. I invite all young men, young women, sisters of the relief society, primary children, elders, high priests, and everyone to prepare themselves to enjoy the blessings of the annual tithing settlement. I know that obedience to the law of tithing brings many blessings and strengthening ties that bind families together forev
 See TG, Fast, Fasting https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1992/04/the-blessings-of-sacrifice?lang=eng , Article read on September 13, 2017
 https://www.lds.org/scriptures/gs/fast-fasting.html?lang=eng&letter=F . Also see Topical guide in French, Article read on September 13, 2017
 See 3 Nephi 24 : 10-12
 Joseph F. Smith, Gospel Doctrine, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1939, pp. 225–26; italics added
 D&C 119:4-5