Trail Guide–Directions for the Journey of a Lifetime XI
Sharing What You Have in Your Pack (Continued)
A QUICK STUDY OF A GIVER’S HEART
THE WIDOWS MITE – Giving God All We Have
Luke 21:1-4 (NLT)
While Jesus was in the Temple, he watched the rich people putting their gifts into the collection box. Then a poor widow came by and dropped in two pennies.
“I assure you,” he said, “this poor widow has given more than all the rest of them. For they have given a tiny part of their surplus, but she, poor as she is, has given everything she has.”
Let’s do a quick study of this passage by picking out three key elements.
- The Poor Widow
- The Two Pennies
- The Lord Jesus
The Poor Widow
We don’t know anything about this widow. Her name. How long she’s been a widow. Why she is a widow. What type of home she lived in. All we know is that her meager gift impressed Jesus, not because of its size, but because of what it revealed about the heart of the giver. She was placing in God’s hands all that she had.
The Two Pennies
Literally these two pennies (Greek word “lepton”) mentioned in the passage would have been more like a shaving from a penny. It was the least valuable of all the coins of the day. In some versions of the Bible the word “mite” is used to identify the minuteness of the offering.
The Lord Jesus
In the middle of the story and overseeing it all is the Lord Jesus. Multitudes of people had come with large sums of money to put in the temple treasury. Jesus, the Son of God was there watching. He wasn’t watching as an accountant, nor as a judge, but as one who was able to see past the earthly treasure being placed in the offering to the heart of the giver and their connection with the Kingdom of God. As He saw the widow—who, by the way, probably came as discreetly as she possibly could—He observed a woman who had a life-altering connection to the kingdom of God.
What is Really Being Offered
The danger as we consider sharing what we have is that we might be tempted to limit the scope of our discussion to the financial resources we put in the offering plate. But I believe that this widow’s gift identified that she had really given much more than her money. Her total devotion belonged to God. She had given Him everything, her time, money, strength. To the world around her, the people with their big jingling bags of coins, her gift must have seemed like little more than an amusement, but it was this gift that Christ recognized because of what was given with the gift.
Looking Back at the Fourth Step on the Trail
There is a difficult and Challenging Question we all need to ask:
What Does Jesus Think of My Offering?
He’s not looking merely to the size of my offering, nor to the frequency of my giving, but how what I give represents my connection to the Kingdom of God.
How Can I offer God…
- My Treasure?
- My Talents?
- My Time?
- My Totality?
Tithing worksheet – It’s About More than Money
Total Gross Income ___________________
- Figure out either Weekly, Monthly, or Annually.
- This is the amount that God has provided you with.
Multiply by 10% (.10) ___________________
- This is the amount of the tithe of your money.
How many hours does God provide you with each day? _________
Multiply that number of hours by 10% (.10) _________
Are you willing to figure out ways to tithe your time?
What is the square footage of your home? _________
Multiply that Number by 10% (.10) _________
Are you willing to dedicate a tithe of your space to God?