Archive for the ‘Faith’ Category

The Teens Mite

Posted: Jul 24, 2008 in Faith, Spiritual Transformation

For the point scroll down to the bottom, otherwise the setup of what I am trying to say starts here!

There is a wonderful story about Jesus in Mark and Luke (MK 12.41-44 and Lk 21.1-4) in which Jesus has sat down at the treasury (the tithing basket for the Jews) and watches these people coming in and dropping their support of the Temple and the work of God. As he is watching, many rich people are putting their large gifts of money into the collection. But then came a poor widow, who walked up and dropped in two small copper coins, worth nothing more than a penny.

I can imagine the scene even now, here is a woman who just desired so desperately to give to God. I wonder if it even crossed her mind that this was the money that might be needed to purchase food for that week OR that the bill collectors would be calling later to collect and here she is giving to God. What was she thinking in giving for “she out of her poverty has put everything she had, all she had to live on” into the offering? I cannot even begin to imagine the struggle of this offering but perhaps not for the reasons you might think.

You see, I am very blessed and therefore I, like the rich, give out of the abundance God has given. Truth be told, I have a feeling that when this woman woke up that morning there was no question about the day ahead. Unlike the rich who tallied up there income and responsibly balanced their budget for the day, making sure that no debt was left unpaid, no meal unaccounted for or that no one needed clothes for camp and definitely making sure that the entertainment money was protected, this poor widow, went to the Temple that day in order to give everything she had. For she knew that even that penny was a gift from God and that if she did not give it in faith, how could she ever expect that her faith would allow God to provide.

I know this struggle well as I make sure that my tithe is accounted for in my checking account. I don’t know what it is to depend on God because I so often depend on the balance of my accounts as my God. And if that gets to empty, I look to other people’s money and borrow to feed the family OR put clothes on my back that aren’t faded or from last year. Oh how I wish that I could live like the widow.


Actually, I wish I could live like a wonderful teen at my church. This one, who should not understand giving so well, this past week gave all that had they had worked so hard to make from babysitting some other kids at church for five hours. $60 to be exact. This teen didn’t even hesitate to give and in fact went out of the way to make sure Mom and Dad didn’t see them put it in the basket for fear they might hinder the spirit of giving. $60!! For a teen!! As a teen, 60 bucks is a lot of money and I know there were already plans for some of that money.

Eventually Dad found out about this great gift and when he went to his child in his wisdom and said, “I would not have stopped you from giving but you do need to know, you don’t have to give everything you earned.” Then, from the mouth of His dear child came this paraphrased reply, “Why not, I don’t need it but the church and its people do. Besides, I have babysitting jobs coming up, there will be more coming later” (faith in the provision of God, from a teen who should be asking Dad for a $20 bill,or at least that is what I would have been doing as a teen).

To this wonderful example of giving, we say, thank you for showing your brothers and sisters how to give good gifts! You, dear child of God, are precious and holy in God’s sight. I am sure Jesus was looking upon your gift and saying, “this one, from little, has put in everything they had into the offering. Well done my good and faithful servant.”

* Name and gender have been left out in order to protect the identity of this wonderful person.