The Giving Widow
Luke began his narrative introducing us to Anna, who for 84 years lived as a widow in the Temple precincts. She was one of the early witnesses declaring that the baby in Mary’s arms was the Messiah (Lk. 2:37). Then it was the widow of Zarephath who had her needs met by Elijah who became one of Jesus’ prime exhibits that God includes foreigners in His Kingdom (Lk. 4:25-26). And it was the widow of Nain who received back her dead son when Jesus interrupted a funeral and raised the corpse (Lk. 7:12).
Now in today’s passage Jesus is standing near the trumpets, the containers by the Court of Women that received the freewill offerings of the Jews coming to worship at the Temple. A lot of wealthy folks filled the receptacles, but it was the tiny ring of two small coins worth a fourth of a penny that caught Jesus’ attention-the offering from a widow.
“Now looking up, Jesus saw the rich casting their gifts into the Temple treasury. Then He saw a poor widow casting in two lepta (a lepta was worth 1/8th of a cent). Then He said, ‘Count on it! I tell you that this poor widow cast in more than all the others. For all of them gave out of their abundance, but she gave more than all of them. She gave out of what she needed to sustain her life.” Luke 21:1-4
The amount was minuscule, but compared to what she possessed, it was gigantic. She gave what she needed for life, not out of her excess. Jesus had just exposed the leaderships’ love of money and how they stole from widows. He made the widow and her sacrifice the heroin in His story. I need to remember how the Lord evaluates giving, including my own.
LORD, give me a heart for giving to You like this widow!
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