"And concerning the tithe of the herd, or of the flock, even of whatsoever passeth under the rod, the tenth shall be holy unto the Lord.
He shall not search whether it be good or bad, neither shall he change it: and if he change it at all, then both it and the change thereof shall be holy; it shall not be redeemed."
In my mind I pictured the shepherd numbering his sheep. Putting them in a fold and allowing only one at a time to pass out. All the while dipping his colored rod on the tenth sheep to pass. Thereby marking the lamb to be tithed. Whichever came out as the tenth was the Lord's. I sat and thought about the illiterate, unable to count to ten. How would they know which was the tenth? Then I looked at my hands. My own hands show me what is ten. I had never looked at them that way. Even a little child can match with a finger and know one of something belongs to the Lord.
I pondered on the animals coming out of the fold at will. What absolute faith it took, that what came as the tenth would be the Lord's. If it was your favorite or prize sheep it did not matter, it was the Lord's. I sat and thought how this is similar to how I pay my tithing. After getting paid my wages I sit and balance my checkbook. Before paying any bills I count the tenth of my income and pay my tithing first. Then relying on celestial bookkeeping I pay the remainder of my bills. During lean times it has been tempting to wait on paying my tithing so a bill could be paid. I have since learned to not even look at the bills before paying tithing, so the temptation is not even there. It really is having faith that whatever comes out of the fold next will be as the Lord wanted, and a way will be prepared.
In college I received my degree in Accounting and the Lord's method is far superior. I gave my method the name celestial bookkeeping, because it follows heaven's law of paying tithes first. After I pay the Lord's tithe I know somehow, as a wise steward, I will have sufficient for my needs, even when there are more bills to be paid than money on hand. Through the spirit my mind will open up and I will see the way to shuffle things, coming to a solution that meets our family's needs and my creditors. I have witnessed true miracles which makes me absolutely love being the celestial bookkeeper of my home. The whole act is holy when dedicated to the Lord. I love paying the bills and witnessing the promise blessings. He never fails me, I have sufficient for my needs when I pay the Lord first.
President Hinckley said "While tithing is paid with money, more importantly it is paid with faith." The paying of tithing has blessed me with greater faith in the Lord.