Monday, November 26, 2007
The Widow's Mite
Luke tells us in today's gospel that "when Jesus looked up he saw some wealthy people putting their offerings into the treasury and he noticed a poor woman putting in two small coins. He said, "I tell you truly, this poor widow put in more than all the rest; for those others have all made offerings from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood."
Jesus noticed and he called attention to it. In Mark's Gospel we have the same story but Mark has Jesus calling the disciples to let them know that this poor widow has put in more than all the wealthy as she has put in everything she had!
True generosity is like that. I saw this kind of generosity often in Chile. One day, visiting a very poor family with just a small shelter and dirt floor, I saw one of the neighbors come to ask if she could have a bit of sugar; immediately she was given their entire sugar supply which was a small bowel but it was all that the family had. It never would have entered their minds to give only half! I saw this happen over and over again among the poor. Why am I lacking this kind of generosity? I find myself calculating; this is humbling as I give only what I can spare. Jesus asks for more.
Lord, teach me to be generous!