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 The Great Marriage Divider

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Today, Kent and Jessica Atwood have a happy life with their children. However, soon after they were married, Jessica gave her life to Christ after the death of her brother and their relationship changed. “Kent,” Jessica said, “I found Jesus and I want to be a Christian. I want to go to church and tithe. I want to do it all, I'm all in...and he was just silent.” In Kent's words, “You know, I thought I married someone and then six months after our wedding, I didn't marry that person and it was a completely different person. It all started from that and rolled downhill after that.” 

As Jessica began to live out her faith, she also desired to start giving money away. She began tithing on income she received from being an auditor for a hospitality company. “As soon as we started giving, we started having extra money at the end of every month,” she recalled. “Finances became easier almost immediately.”

Nine years into their marriage, they had two sons with another on the way and better paying jobs. Kent got a promotion and became a project manager for a construction company and Jessica got a new, higher paying job for a major auto manufacturer. Kent reluctantly agreed to allow Jessica to tithe off of his income too. However, as their giving increased so did his unhappiness. “I felt like that was our money,” Kent said. “And to give it away for something I'm not all about yet…it kind of hurt me and created tension between us.” 

One Sunday while they were at their church service, Jessica noticed Kent was crying. “I put my head down,” he said, “and I just heard, 'go get baptized.' I went to the back and I was so emotional in the back, the lady couldn't even understand me. She said, 'oh, sir, are you okay? Do you need me to call an ambulance?' I just said, 'I need to be baptized.' I was baptized that day and I've never felt anything like that, ever.”

“Kent came back to me after that and he was a changed man,” Jessica recalled. The couple began tithing together. “God has absolutely provided for us in the financial space and in our careers.” She exclaimed, “He's given Kent and I both favor and ability to do the things that He has called us to do.”

Today, the Atwoods are united by their love for God and happily married. They love to give and continue to tithe on all their income. “It's all God's money,” Kent said. “Money is nothing and it doesn't buy happiness. It makes you happy for a minute and then it's gone the next minute. To me, tithing is just the way of saying, 'thank you.'" 

“God is so good,” Jessica exclaimed. “And it is the one place in the Bible that has a promise that if you bring your tithes to the storehouse, He'll open the gates of heaven. He will provide and He is our provider. You can't outgive God.”

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About The Author


Morgan Costner is a features producer for The 700 Club (2023) and formerly the Production Coordinator for The 700 Club (2020-2023). Morgan and her husband, Thomas, both work for the Christian Broadcasting Network and actually met while working together on a project. They serve as the Young Adult Directors at their church, Harvest Assembly, and are in love with their sweet pets, Percy and Julia.

About The Author

Cheryl Wilcox Headshot

Cheryl Wilcox, Coordinating Producer, The 700 Club. I hail from a Jesus loving SoCal surf family 🏄🏻‍♀️. I’m the mother of two brilliant, business owning daughters. My heroes are the Great Emancipators and Corrie Ten Boom 🇳🇱. I scull 🚣🏻‍♀️ for life balance, (it’s a little easier than surfing) and I’m passionate about organic food 🥗 and gardening. Since 1989, I’ve produced feature stories 🎬 for CBN. In my free time I enjoy reading about the lives of Saints – like Julian of Norwich🇬🇧. I’m baptized Anglican. Christ is King! 💫