“Calling His disciples to Him, Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others. They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything – all she had to live on.””
Derek Thomas tells the following story in order to illustrate the principle of true Christian giving which the Lord Jesus Christ teaches His disciples in Mark 12:41-44.
“Now the story is told – I have no way of verifying it – a little girl in church, and when the offering plate comes around she puts in her doll, her treasured little doll. Now this is the doll that she takes to bed with her at night, and gets up in the morning and carries it around under her arm. It’s her treasure, and she puts it on the offering plate. And the deacons are touched, and the minister during the course of the week comes round and visits the family and brings the doll with him, and says to the little girl, “I’m giving her back to you.” And the little girl wipes a tear from her eyes and shakes her head and says, “No.” And when the Pastor asks why, she says, “I didn’t give it to you. I gave my doll to the Lord.””
Mark is at the end of chapter 12 describing true saving faith. It is a faith that arises from a heart that is given completely and unreservedly to the Lord. The widow brought all that she had to live on. In her poverty she gave all that she had. What she was demonstrating was that God had done something in her heart that had resulted in her coming to trust in His provision for her. What she had did not matter because she believed that to quote the Apostle Paul, “My God shall supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19) What was important to her was the extravagant expression of real love to the Lord with all of her heart. This was the purpose of her life and living. She had come to understand that the God she worshipped would care for her needs. His Word had demonstrated this time and again. The test was in her demonstrating that faith in real life. Would she bring her treasure, her last two coins, her future, her security, to her Lord and cast it into the Treasury?
That is the test for each of us. What is our treasure? What are we relying upon today? We cling to it as if life itself depends upon it? In this world it often seems as if life itself does depend upon our treasure. So we cling to it. We protect it. We worry about it. So often after all of that effort it fails us. Jim Elliott once wrote, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep, in order to gain what he cannot lose.” This is the position we find ourselves in. We find that to gain an eternal security through faith in the Lord we have to give ourselves without reservation to the Lord. This requires us to yield up our lives, and all our treasure in trust to Him. We in fact become living sacrifices. What we get back is His limitless resources. He promises to meet our needs. This truly becomes for us a narrow road of faith. On that road however there is great and eternal blessing. God is fitting us not for this world, but for the one to come. He is remaking us into people who are truly holy, not with that which we have created for ourselves, but with that which He has created within us through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ. All we need to is give ourselves without reservation to our Lord. Will you?