Even meager contributions make a difference

In Luke 21: 1-4 and Mark 12: 41-44 (NIV), we read where Jesus noticed the widow putting two copper coins into the temple treasury. They were worth less than a penny, which is America’s smallest coin, also made of copper.

That has nothing to do with this article except that she had less than two cents worth to put into the treasury. Still, Jesus said she put in more than all the others, who were giving out of their wealth.

Rather than being about the amount given or the percentage of the giver’s income, Jesus’ statement was about faith guiding the attitude of the heart. That is, these rich people gave out of their wealth, throwing their money into the treasury. While not all rich people are like that, these had put their faith in their other riches to meet their needs and desires. They had treasures on earth with money enough to throw away. They also may have thrown their money at the problem to avoid personal involvement.

The widow’s faith was in God. She put her money where her heart was because she knew everything else would be provided, whether or not she had two coins to rub together (Matthew 6: 19-21, 25-33). She also probably identified with the fact that the temple treasury addressed poverty among widows, orphans, and others in need (Deuteronomy 10: 18; 26: 12-15). So, she threw herself into helping to solve that problem (Romans 6: 13; 1 Corinthians 6: 20).

We can trust God to take care of us no matter how severe the challenge. And having that faith, we also can take advantage of the opportunities God gives us to serve, not matter how daunting, or menial, because he prepares us for the work and the work for us (2 Corinthians 1: 8-11; Ephesians 2: 10; 2 Timothy 3: 16, 17).

Granted, the widow’s two cents doesn’t seem like much; but with God, every little bit helps and in God’s kingdom, even those who merely watch the baggage share equally in the rewards (Romans 10: 13-15; Philippians 4: 10; 1: 3-7; 1 Samuel 30: 21-31; 1 Corinthians 3: 5-8). Those who can’t even give two cents’ worth contribute equally to the horseshoe nail that prevented the loss of the kingdom, as the proverbial nursery rhyme goes.

We shouldn’t belittle our own or anyone else’s value in regard to God’s kingdom (1 Corinthians 12: 4 to 13: 13; Romans 12: 3-8). God notices the least we do and will remember it just as Jesus noticed the widow putting her two coins into the temple treasury (Mark 14: 3-9; 9: 41; Hebrews 6: 10-12).

While we’re only expected to do what we can, we’re to be persistent in doing good deeds (Galatians 6: 9; James 4: 17). So, don’t withhold even your meager two cents’ worth from God. He’ll do immeasurably more than we can imagine with whatever we have to offer (Malachi 3: 10-12; Romans 12: 1, 2; Ephesians 3: 20, 21; 1 Corinthians 2: 6-9).