401k: keeping your firstfruits

Do you put money into a 401k?  If so, what percentage of your salary do you put in?  The company where I have worked for the last 7 years offers 401k, but I’ve never signed up despite the fact that it’s all pre-tax and the company matches what you put in up to a certain percentage. 

My friends and coworkers never understood why I didn’t put in and always tried to convince me that “you gotta pay yourself first”.  I always convinced myself that I simply could not afford it at the time and would put in eventually…when I was more established financially and had less debt.  But I knew that I would probably always have debt and was using it as an excuse.  But why?  Was I afraid of it because I didn’t have much of an understanding of it?  I don’t know what the real reasons for not utilizing it were at first, but I recently realized something about 401k that makes perfect sense: it is my firstfruit.

If you think about the concept of firstfruits, that is your first and best of something, it is exactly what 401k money is.  Firstfruits are mentioned in the Holy Bible several times, and each is in regard to offering your firstfruits to the Lord as a sign of faith.  If you give the Lord the first of your crop, when it’s all you have to give, you are trusting the Lord to provide the rest.  Not an easy thing to do is it?  Naturally we think to keep the first or only things that we have for fear we may not have enough later.  People who put money into 401k are giving themselves their own firstfruits for fear that God would not provide enough for them to live comfortably from the time if retirement to the time of their death.

As soon as this clicked in my head it all made perfect sense.  It made me think that perhaps we are not offering up nearly enough.  It’s a scary thought to offer more than we do already, especially when we are struggling to get by the way it is.  But what better way to show your trust and faith?  Interesting concept, eh?

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