The Secrets of Giving
“she, . . . put all she owned, all she had to live on.” Mark 12:44
There will be no giving when we are dead. Above all, let us give as disciples of the crucified Savior, who gave Himself, body and soul on a cross. Freely we receive, so freely we give. Looking at the extravagant gift of the cross should remind us of our own poverty of spirit.
The poverty of the human spirit breaks through human pretenses and frees us from our spiritual elitism and the desire to be important. It brings us into awareness of the greatness of our God and our inadequacy. Any progress in our spiritual life cannot be traced back to our efforts. All is the work of grace. Without a gut-wrenching experience with our own spiritual poverty, it’s impossible to encounter the living God.
The beauty of the widow’s soul challenges our earthbound rationalism. We know too well the empty reasoning we would’ve given ourselves, “What difference could a penny make?” “Why not split the difference and give one to God and keep one for food?” “It’s so small, it won’t count at all.”
The distinguishing mark of her gift was not in the amount, there was something in her heart that lifted the gift out of routine and into the realm of sacrifice. She knew the secrets of giving.
The posture of the heart
She did not know Jesus was watching her that day, she knew God saw her and that’s who she came to please. In her giving, she was saying, “I love you, all I have is yours, here’s my heart, my life.”
The power of humility
God does great things with small things. Down through the ages the widow’s small offering has inspired others and produced billions and billions for the kingdom. When there is love in the giver, there will be power in the gift.
The proportional harvest
From God’s perspective there is no advantage of status or station in life, all of us can do great things for God. And God’s judgment will reveal our true motives, be it stingy, or generous.
Is it possible for the church to love and give like the widow?