She gave it all
For they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.” Mark 12:44
Have you ever felt so much love and admiration for God that you wanted to give all that you possessed? What about just giving Him the things that are most precious to you? Oh I know God doesn’t require us to give Him all of our possessions, but has His love ever filled you up so greatly that you desired to lay it all at His feet?
In today’s reading, there was a poor widow that came to the temple to give. She only gave a little bit to offer, but she gave it all. Even though there were many others there that were rich and gave large amounts of money, Jesus told His disciples that the widow gave more than all of them because she gave her whole livelihood.
This concept seems foolish some people. Why would you give your money away? And especially to the church? This poor widow was giving at a time when it was obvious that the priests were getting rich off of the people’s giving. Why would she give all that she had that they would never appreciate? She knew something that they didn’t know. She loved God and was giving her gift to Him, not to the temple leaders. What they did with her gift was between them and God. She gave because of God and what happened to the money after that was not her concern. She knew that her offering was accepted in heaven at the throne because it was from her heart to the heart of God.
Maybe you are someone who gives tithes and offerings at the church or donations to ministries, supporting the work of God in various places. These are certainly worthy gifts, but if given out of duty or obligation, there is no love for God and His work being done in this world. It is important to check your heart when giving and purpose that you want to love and honor God with all your giving. Pray over your gifts and offer them to God with your words and heart.
Proverbs 3:9 says: Honor the Lord with your possessions, and with the firstfruits of all your increase; and 2 Corinthians 9:7 says: So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. The instruction in these passages are clear, we are to give from every increase we receive and not just give, but to honor God by giving it to Him, not to an organization. Also, to purpose or plan to give so you will not be compelled to give grudgingly.
Lastly, consider when giving to individuals in need. Sure if a friend or loved one comes to you and asks for help, you would certainly give willingly. Probably not even considering that you are giving to God, but what about those on the street corner that are looking for their next meal? Do you give willingly out of your abundance or do you judge who is worthy and what will be done with your gift? Proverbs 19:17 tells us that He who has pity on the poor lends to the Lord. It doesn’t tell us to consider and scrutinize what will be done with the funds, it just says that when you give you are giving to God. What a great promise and such freedom. You no longer need to decide who is worthy to receive your blessing and who will appreciate your sacrifice. Instead, you can see these opportunities as an honor to give to your Father in heaven and trust Him to see to how the substance is being used.
Today I want to encourage you to give. Give your tithes and give your offerings. Very few things in this world are transferable into the spirit world, but giving from your heart is seen and received by God. Don’t worry about how God will provide for you if you give, just honor Him with your love and giving and His blessing will follow you in all the areas of your life. Look for opportunities to bless others whether you know them or not and let God be the one who makes sure your gifts are used to reach the lost ones. Remember, your love for Him is evident in what you are willing to release into His hands to reach those who are far from Him.
Today’s scripture reading: Mark 12:35-44
35 Then Jesus answered and said, while He taught in the temple, “How is it that the scribes say that the Christ is the Son of David?
36 For David himself said by the Holy Spirit: ‘The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” ’
37 Therefore David himself calls Him ‘Lord’; how is He then his Son?” And the common people heard Him gladly.
38 Then He said to them in His teaching, “Beware of the scribes, who desire to go around in long robes, love greetings in the marketplaces,
39 the best seats in the synagogues, and the best places at feasts,
40 who devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation.”
41 Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much.
42 Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites, which make a quadrans.
43 So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury;
44 for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.”