Thursday, April 6, 2017

Lenten Devotionals - Mark 12:41-44


Widow's mite!

I feel I often interpret this passage somewhat wrong. I like numbers. My first love is always words, but I still love flirting with numbers on occasion (this sounds weirder than it is). So I see this story, and my brain goes, "Aha! It is not about amount--it's about the ratio of how much you have to give. Percentages! MUST GIVE MORE PERCENT."

But that isn't strictly true. Even if I look at the widow giving 100% (which is always what God wants, just sometimes in different ways) and the rich giving a smaller percentage, I'm missing the meaning. Tithing is 10%, but if you just cut off ten percent, you're still doing it wrong. It's all about how much you are trusting God, I guess. Will you put your money where your mouth is?

And I don't think that means you should give up your savings account, unless that's what you have been asked to do. Yes, the widow trusted God, but she still had less. A cent isn't going to do too much; two cents won't even do that much, so why not give up your cent? Maybe I'm thinking about this too logically again. But it's easy for me to give up, say, smoking as a testimony to God, because I haven't smoked, don't want to smoke, and have asthma so I don't really want to make my lungs worse. It's harder to give up something you have more of, too.

Maybe that's not the best example. But it's easy to throw a quarter in the offering because you can't do too much with it, even if that's all you have. Or my mind tells me that. Maybe that's more a sign of my privilege than anything else. And it's easier to trust God when there's nothing else left to rely on. That part I'm sure about.

But regardless of that, we celebrate the widow. It seemingly doesn't matter how hard it is for you to trust God--what matters is whether you do. Hmm. This is not my strongest suit, but I don't think it's because I'm rich. Maybe I was entirely wrong above...

(Also, yes, another post after midnight. TBH, I'm surprised I've only done this a handful of times.)

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