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Previous Challenge Entry
Topic: Poor (10/25/04)

TITLE: Seeing the Heart of the Poor
By bobbi richardson


As a single parent of two there have been times when I didnít know how I was going to pay the bills, the rent and car repairs and still be able to feed my family. We couldnít afford some of the things we wanted. We never went on big vacations. We lived in an apartment and I drove an old car that needed repairs often. Some would see us as poor.

The funny thing was that at the end of the month somehow everything got paid for and we were never hungry. I never thought of us as poor. I always thought we were blessed. I knew it wasnít anything I did that got us through the month.

This summer my daughter went on a mission trip to Mexico with our youth group. Twenty American kids were introduced to a family of five that actually lives on $50 a week. They were there to build a two-room house for this family whose home was a shelter made of scraps of wood and anything else they could find. Some people would see this family as poor.

What made a lasting impression on each one of those teenagers? Every day the father went to the local store and bought them all sodas for lunch because he wanted to do something to show his gratitude. Thatís true generosity. This man is not poor.

Jesus once pointed out a widow who put all she had into the temple offering. We donít know her name. Some people only saw a poor widow.

By one simple ordinary act, without knowing it, she was immortalized in Godís word as a lesson to Jesusí disciples.

Why did He call His followers over to watch as a poor widow presented her offering? I think it was because He saw so much in her beyond the lack of material possessions. He saw her courage in putting in all she had. He saw her faith and obedience in giving to the work of the temple as God commanded. He saw her love and devotion in offering what she had willingly, not out of a sense of duty. He was able to see into her heart and He liked what He saw.

Generosity. Courage. Trust. Devotion. Obedience. These are characteristics that Jesus wants to develop in all of His followers. He wanted His disciples then and now to see that itís not material things that make us rich or poor, but our character. Itís not the outside that counts, but whatís in the heart.

Member Comments
Member Date
Lynda Lee Schab 11/02/04
Good thoughts, Bobbi. I also thought of using the widow woman as the basis for my entry. What tremendous faith she had to give even when she had nothing. As you pointed out, God takes care of His own!
Thanks for posting.
Blessings, Lynda
Mitzi Busby11/02/04
Bobbi, God is faithful to supply our needs. Great work!
Deborah Anderson11/02/04
Good teaching for all of us to live by. God bless you.
Phyllis Inniss 11/04/04
It is our heart and not our riches that shows the true believers. Your article shows that. Blessings.
DeAnna Brooks11/05/04
"I never thought of us as poor." The KEY, I think! Poornes is a spirit...and attitude. Thanks for the reminder.
Debbie OConnor11/05/04
This is so good and so true. It is what is in the heart that matters. Well done!
Rita Garcia11/06/04
Bobbi, great entry, well written. Blessings, Rita
Melanie Kerr 11/07/04
A very challenging piece. it amkes me wonder what Jesus sees in me when I give money into the collection at church!