Norm and I visited at Plainfield Christian Church in 1998, at the invitation of Norm’s co-worker, Fred Brasher. We quickly felt at home and were eager to learn and settle in as a newly married couple. Norm and I got married in 1992, each of us with two kids. We both had church backgrounds, but I can say for myself, that although I was raised in a Christian household, I had only begun to understand that my faith had to be my own, not my parents. My first step was to be reborn through baptism in June of 1999.
When it came to our giving, Norm and I both understood that we needed to put an offering in the plate. We also both knew enough about church to know that a tithe meant 10 percent of our earnings. 10 percent—was that before tax or after tax? Do we owe an offering if we didn’t get paid? What about a tax return, did we owe an offering on tax returns? What if we were on vacation and weren’t at church, do we still “owe?” We had so many questions and doubts.