Article written for my children. 10/2011
Baby Fund vs Tithing
By: Brenda Horrocks
By: Brenda Horrocks
Brad and I had been married almost 6 years when we were blessed to adopt our first child, Brenley. Brenley came to our family when she was 32 hours old and we felt we held the world in our hands. One year and 3 months later our second daughter came into our family. Haley was 2 days old when her Birth Parents placed her in our arms. Adoption was a huge blessing to our family! With strong feelings that there was another child meant for our home we started to put money away in what we called our “baby fund”. We needed to come up with a certain amount of money t file our paperwork with LDS Family Services in order to try to adopt a 3rd time. We had tried fertility treatments for a last time which quickly depleted much of our fund. I was anxious to have enough money to put in for adoption again. We were halfway to our goal when Brad discovered an error in our tithing payments. We were short somehow, the exact amount that was sitting in our baby fund. Brad suggested we use the baby fund to make up for the mistake. I panicked and tried to think of another way to make up for the missed tithing. I began to make a case for why we didn’t need to use our baby fund…thinking of many other ways of trying to get the money to pay our tithing. I started to rationalize by thinking about our righteous desire to add another child to our eternal family. I couldn’t handle the idea of putting off filing our paperwork. I longed for a third child. All of my hope was wrapped in being approve for adoption and it took money to do that. I was sure the Lord would understand.
A few days went by and I continue to ponder over this dilemma. I wanted to do what was right but I wanted what was right to be what I wanted. One night while Brad slept I went down in our basement bathroom and poured my heart out to Heavenly Father. I remember thinking of Alma and felt a greater understanding of what he meant when he said he “wrestled with God in mighty prayer” (Alma 8:10). For me it was a long, tear filled night. As I prayed and pleaded to God my heart was softened and I thought of Abraham and how he was asked to chose between the Lord and his only son. I understood in a new way what a difficult decision that must have been for him…to have to decide between two people he loved. Being an infertile woman I had no other way to bring children to our family. Giving up my baby fund felt like I was giving up my baby. I struggled to do the right thing but as I remembered Abraham I knew that by using the baby fund to pay our tithing it was not only the right thing to do but it was how I could show the Lord I loved Him more than I loved anything else. I prayed again and shared with Heavenly Father my decision and poured out my heart again asking Him to help us in our efforts to adopt. I felt loved and I knew the decision was the right one and I had a great sense of peace.
The next day I told Brad to use the baby fund and pay our tithing, which he did. By the following Friday Brad called and let me know he had just received a significant raise at work….this raise would not only bless our family financially but it would allow us to build our baby fund much more quickly. I knew with all of my heart that this was a blessing in direct response of obedience in paying tithing. My testimony of tithing, of obedience and my testimony of the love the Lord has for us grew ten fold. But the blessings didn’t stop there, months later as we were getting ready to have a child placed with us we received an anonymous check in the mail. The check was written out to us for “Baby Horrocks”. The amount was exactly double what we had paid in tithing. We do not know who sent us this incredible gift but we know it was a blessing that came because of obedience. We are so thankful for the unknown giver. The Birth Mother who was planning to place her baby with us ended up deciding to parent and this money helped us recover the money we used to travel out of state to be with this Birth Mother. While we respected and supported her decision we were so sad to not have this child come to our family. It was a huge blessing to not have the financial burden attached to that grief.
A few months after our failed placement we were blessed with a beautiful 8 month old baby boy who has brought joy beyond measure! Since this time we have added another baby boy to our family. I know that obedience blessed our lives back in 2005 with an increase in funds….in 2006 with an anonymous gift and in 2009 with another child.
Today obedience to the law of tithing continues to bless our lives and our family. Tithing is never a decision we make over and over again…it is paid regularly. Brad was blessed with inspiration to help ensure that we would never make a mistake like we made back in 2005…our tithing comes out first automatically. We have seen blessing after blessing because of this decision. Some blessings come in the form of material help while the other blessings have been an increase in spiritual gifts and testimonies being strengthened. We continue to see the windows of heaven open and the blessings flow to our little family. Just like Abraham was willing to sacrifice his only son to show love and obedience…. tithing is a way we can show our love and obedience to the Lord. When we put the Lord first in our lives we never lose. The Lord gives us more than we could ever repay by blessing us according to His will.