Mark 12:41-44; Luke 21:1-4 — What God is looking for

After the blistering criticism Jesus gave the Pharisees, he settled back, and quietly started to watch the people walking past the place where offerings were put.

A number of rich people walked past, and with great ceremony dumped in large amounts of money.  And perhaps as they did, Jesus’ face twisted in consternation.  Person after person walked by, giving their offerings, but somehow, I imagine Jesus’ face only grew darker.

And then a poor widow walked by.  Unlike many of those who had dropped in their offerings, this woman only dropped in two coins.  There was no pride in it.  No seeking of attention.  I imagine there was only a heart filled with love and gratefulness toward God.

At this, Jesus’ face lit up.  And he quickly pointed her out to the disciples, telling them,

I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others.  (43)

The disciples must have thought Jesus was out of his mind.  And they probably said, “Jesus, what are you talking about?  You can barely buy anything with what that woman gave!”

But Jesus replied,

They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything — all she had to live on.  (44)

I don’t think it’s coincidence that Jesus pointed this woman out after all he had said about the Pharisees and teachers of the law.  He had just scathed them for all their hypocrisy, because all of their righteousness was merely for show.

And so when he finally found the kind of person that God was really looking for, he said to his disciples, “This is what I’m talking about.  This is the kind of person God is looking for.”

What kind of person was that?  A person whose heart truly belonged to God.

A heart that didn’t worry about what others thought about her.  A heart that didn’t cling to what was hers.  But a heart that said, “Here I am.  Here’s what I have.  I give it to you.”

How about you?  Is that the kind of heart you have?  Can Jesus point to you and say, “Here is a person whose heart is mine?”

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About bkshiroma

I'm from Hawaii, but have been in Japan as a missionary/English teacher since 1995. I'm currently going to a church called Crossroad Nishinomiya, an international church in Nishinomiya, a city right between Kobe and Osaka. Check out their website: crossroad-web.com 私がハワイから来ましたけど1995年に宣教師と英会話の教師として日本に引っ越しました。 今西宮にあるクロスロード西宮という国際の教会に行っています。どうぞ、そのホムページを見てください: crossroad-web.com
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