This past Tuesday was giving Tuesday. Ironically after two big spending holidays. In the Christmas season we often talk about how it is better to give than to receive. We take on projects to help people, and we should. In the Old Testament they too had holidays where they focused on helping the poor. Let’s look in that heart for a moment.
As we read Mark 12:41-44, Jesus tells his disciples that a widow who gave a penny gave more than all the rich people dumping in loads of cash. No doubt that rocked the disciples and those around Jesus. Clearly she did not give more, but Jesus said she gave more. Ok, by percentage she may have given more, but effectively she did not. So what is the issue?
Big hearts give big
The widow didn’t have to give. She gave out of her poverty. The wealthy gave out of their abundance. It cost the widow to give. It didn’t cost the rich ones to give. True giving come from a desire to help people and worship God. The pattern that Jesus is pointing to is not an amount but sacrifice.
Jesus gave his life. That was far more than the 10% people often here of. Jesus gave up the comforts of heaven. That is far more than the giving of the wealthy that Jesus was observing. Jesus gave up his reputation, which is far more than the social justice we hear about. Jesus sacrificed and forgave. That gift is far greater than anything. It truly was sacrifice, just like the widow’s one penny.
Make it so
Each person has the ability to make the world a better place, but it is not from giving out of our abundance. Making a difference takes sacrifice. The Christmas season reminds us of that price it takes to make a difference. So what are you going to give this season? More importantly, from what kind of a heart will you give?