It’s a question many Christians ask when it comes to their personal stewardship. Elmer Bendiner in his book, The Fall of Fortresses, tells the remarkable story of a B17 flying fortress that flew a bombing mission over Germany toward the end of World War II. The bomber took several direct hits from Nazi antiaircraft guns and a few actually hit the fuel tank. But miraculously the crippled aircraft made it back without exploding or running out of fuel.
After landing, eleven unexploded 20mm shells were carefully removed from the bomber’s fuel tank! Everyone of them was dismantled and examined. To everyone’s amazement all eleven were empty of explosive material. They couldn’t understand it. Why would the Germans fire empty shells? Well, the mystery was solved when a small note was found inside one of the shells handwritten in Czechoslovakian.
Translated it read, “This is all we can do for you now.”
The story was this: A member of the Czech underground, working in a Nazi munitions factory, had deliberately omitted the explosives in at least eleven of the shells on his assembly line. Not knowing if any of his sabotage efforts would prove effective, he slipped the note into one of the shells hoping that someone who benefited from his efforts one day might discover why.
That same person may very well have died, wondering if the little work he was doing to subvert the enemy war machine, would ever make any difference to the outcome of the war. Nevertheless, doing what little he could each day, exercising his responsibility to take an opportunity to use an ability for the good of someone else, saved the lives of an entire crew on a B17 bomber.
Your tithe may not be a big deal to you (it may even be a small amount)…But little is much when God is in it!