By Katie Pearson
“And a poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which make a penny. And he called his disciples to him and said to them, ‘Truly, I say to you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the offering box. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.’” – Mark 12:42–44
Pride exists on a spectrum: on one extreme, we elevate ourselves above others, as we see in the scribes. On the other extreme, we degrade ourselves, living in shame and guilt. In both cases, there is far more focus on self than others. This is not Gospel living but imprisons the individual in a sinful state of self-awareness that isolates and usually ignores others’ needs.
The widow in this story is a beautiful example of faith in the everyday shortcomings of life. What she lacks in terms of physical needs, she makes up for in spiritual abundance. She knows the Lord, recognizes his love for her, and trusts his care for her life. Her willingness to give “everything she had” shows her faith in God’s provision above all else.
How many of us can say that we live like this? Many of us regularly give our time, talent, and treasure, but would we give everything? Have you ever even considered it?
Reading this story, we can understand that Jesus isn’t necessarily asking us to turn around and give away all we have. But he does want you to give him your whole heart. This story centers on the heart. We could say that it speaks to idolatry, or the things we rely on more than God for our status, safety, or security.
What defines you? What do you believe you have to have to be happy? Take these questions before the Lord and allow his Spirit to expose your strategies for self-protection and self-promotion. Only he can replace them with the freedom that salvation provides. When we allow Jesus his rightful place on the throne of our hearts and lives, we have nothing to fear. Let his words encourage you today. “Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom” (Luke 12:32).
Make some time to sit in solitude with God’s Word. Ask Jesus to help you confess the worldly identities, possessions, people, and titles you trust. Praise him for giving his life to cover every sin and ask him to strengthen your faith in him alone.
Why is trust so difficult? Unlike all the broken promises of this world, God’s redeeming promises are absolute, trustworthy, and true. The covenants of God afford us with abundant reasons to trust God with his plan for our lives. Trusting God: Redeeming Promises of the Word small group Bible study explores the six major redeeming promises of God found in his Word. Learn more about God’s commitment to his people, the nature of a covenant, and how you can find your security in being a child of God’s redeeming promises. Learn more about God’s promises today.
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