But he doesn’t deserve it!

Luke 21:1-5
Jesus saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. 2 He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins.  3 “I tell you the truth,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. 4 All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”
5 Some of his disciples were remarking about how the temple was adorned with beautiful stones and with gifts dedicated to God.
It is interesting that right after the story of this widow comments are made on the accumulated wealth of the temple. This widow gives her food money to an institution that can build gold and jewel encrusted buildings. Something does not seem right about that.

I’ve seen it throughout Latin America. Dirt poor peasants bring their precious pesos or quetzales or centavos or perhaps all they can bring is an egg or some corn and they present it to an institution that has untold wealth in land, gold, jewels, paintings, statues, on and on – literally immeasurable wealth. I see injustice, Jesus did not. He commended this widow. Obviously He was seeing something I am missing.

Perhaps He was seeing that she was not giving, rather she was investing. She was storing up treasure in heaven and Jesus was watching. He didn’t just pay attention to who gave, He also noted how much they gave and what was left over.

I want to decide if “they” need my gift – not just a church or ministry but the guy on the street who seems to have made a profession out of begging. I want to evaluate whether he “deserves” it. Jesus didn’t seem too concerned with need or deserving.  The temple was run by hypocrites and those who would plot Jesus’ murder. Certainly not deserving.  The temple was so impressive the disciples had to comment on its grandeur.  Certainly not in need. They didn’t deserve it or need it yet Jesus did not stop her from giving.  He did not suggest she keep her tiny gift because she needed it much more than the corrupt religious leaders. Instead, He commended her because it was given in faith to God.

The Lord gives the blessings of life, breath, rain and sunshine to the good and to the evil. He knows the wickedness of every man’s heart yet He is still kind and generous to the most undeserving, even to those who reject and curse Him.  If I am to be like Him then I too must give good to those who deserve evil.
Matthew 5:42,45
Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you. [45] that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

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