Jesus was coming to the end of His ministry. From here on in, He would continue to speak to His followers in parables and through every day examples. One day as He was sitting near the temple, He watched as a widow came to make her offering. She placed two copper coins into the collection box.
Jesus commended the woman because He knew this was all she had. The gift was a sacrifice for her, because it probably would have purchased bread for her to eat that week. That doesn’t mean that we should give our last cent to further God’s kingdom, but He was comparing her offering to those who were giving from their excess or what was left over from their wealth – rather from their hearts.
This widow was most likely alone. She had little means and no one to provide for her. Whatever she possessed was meager, but she had something that was even more valuable than all the riches of the world. It was the gift of faith, which the Holy Spirit worked in her. She was down to the end of her savings, yet because of her extreme gratitude for God’s blessings, she gave it all.
I believe that was truly an act of faith. There have been events in my own life where we were down and out. We left bankruptcy court with $11.52 to our name. I seriously doubt we would put that pittance into the offering plate that Sunday. Does that mean we didn’t have enough faith? Not at all. We still had our faith. It’s what has sustained us for the last 30 years. We could’ve given up at that point in life. We could’ve turned away from God, but that wasn’t in our original commitment to Him. We were blessed by Him and able to survive during that time of loss.
We continue to survive because we have learned that God will take care of us no matter what our financial state. He continues to give us all that we need in just the nick of time. To be honest, I often pray that He would hurry up the process, but I know in my heart that He has a plan and it will be accomplished on His timeline.
In my opinion, the amount we give back to God is important, but not necessarily in dollars. We can thank Him through our service to others and to His work. God doesn’t need our money. He doesn’t need our good deeds. He’s already accomplished the work of salvation. What He does need is our faith and trust in Him to determine the plans He’s already mapped out.
Jesus wasn’t trying to elevate poverty. He was teaching His followers to give by faith, trusting that God would always provide for their needs.