The day unfolds in the aged edifice of a Jewish temple which converts to the heart of Judaic culture, where worship and power are the focus and not necessarily in that order. A crossroads where rich and poor alike converge. An on-going surge of people coming and going at will. A hustle and bustle of corruption and idolatry taking place as the powers that be come together. Ensconced in the most prestigious display as though on exhibit, some occupy high positions as educators, religious theologians and such.
For a moment, the noise of human chatter settles to a hush in the back drop, as she enters the portal of one of the outer courts. The evidence of her place in society duly noted by her shabby attire. Jingling loosely in her partially ripped pocket, she reaches to retrieve the coins. Inconspicuously, she moves, to “The Court of the Women”, where she places her offering and turns to leave. She never notices the one called, “Jesus” who looks on in silence as love and compassion emanates His expression while she passes. Only He could appreciate the enormity of the offering she had made.
Two copper coins. They were the last the poor widow had in her possession. “Lepton” (the thin one) the smallest, lightest and the lowest valued Jewish coin of that time. Actual value each less than one cent in U.S. Currency.
Jesus was captivated by her act of giving all she had in comparison to those of wealth and means who gave out of their abundance with plenty left over. Yet her selfless sacrifice was an acknowledgement that she was totally dependent upon none other than her Creator for everything.
To live as a widow during that time meant that she had no one else on whom she could depend. She was an ineffectual part of a nameless, faceless, poor underclass without a voice, status, or money. The beauty and parallel of her story is that much like the widow, who no doubt had fallen upon hard times, we need to be completely dependent upon God for every morsel of our lives. We must acknowledge His grace in the midst of hard times which are certain to come.
One of the great principles of life is the “Law of Sowing and Reaping”. It is very much at work in the spiritual and the physical realm. It is a law that applies to the poor and rich, saint or unbeliever. For a moment reflect on this law as the Apostle Paul advises that we will reap what we sow. (Galations 6: 7 & 9) NIV
Saints, in these troubled times when the stock market is failing, people loosing their jobs through outsourcing and downsizing, the housing market in a huge downward spiral and the economy is in doubt, we must acknowledge God’s sovereignty and see Him fully in control and still at work in the midst of every storm. The devil lurks about on assignment as well, to wreak havoc in the lives of believers. We can rest assured that whatever the devil plots against us, if we like the widow would deepen our commitment to doing our part and totally trust and depend on God, we will find that He is well able to see us through. These wise words serve to remind us from the heart of a Savior to simply rely on Him. No matter how dire circumstances may become, we are admonished to “Trust in the Lord with all our heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make our path straight”. (Proverbs 3:5 & 6 NIV)
Believer, God has a plan for your life that works, if we allow Him to guide us through every trial, through every condition. He is able to turn every situation around for our good and His Glory. He warmly assures us, “For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”. (Jeremiah 29: 11 NIV) God desires for us to live life at its best no matter what the season.
The widow gave all she had during hard times. Though her offering was meager, her act left an indelible image on the souls of all who have burned the pages of scripture in their hearts. Little else is written about the widow and the outcome of her deed. But because of the same God of yesterday, today and forever, by faith I choose to believe that He carried her through the recession of her day, and indeed she reaped a great harvest.
A great little article. one of my favourite stories about Jesus and I think the article does it justice.
With regard to whether the woman had enough well there is a story about a similar woman with Elijah and God took care of her needs. I think Jesus would have done the same (I've no proof though!)