Focal passage: Luke 12:13-21; 21:1-4
In cultures of plenty, like ours, it is easy to forget key truths. First, we forget where all that we have comes from, acting like our material possessions have come simply from our own hard work. Second, we forget what “needs” are, confusing them with “wants.” Third, we forget that material things are one day going to burn and will not last for eternity.
These “forgets” happen because we so easily take our eyes off of God and put them on material things. When we do, we have a distorted view of God and material things. Such a distorted view will often result in us holding onto material things and using God, rather than holding onto God and using material things for His glory through sacrificial giving.
When we recognize that God is the giver of all we have, we don’t mind giving away what He has given to us. If He can provide what we need once, He can and will do it again. Such was the faith response of the poor widow who “gave all she had.” She gave out of worship and obedience. God had enabled her to give because He had given her something to give.
This reminds me of the believers in Macedonia that Paul holds up as an example to the Corinthians – “… for in a severe test of affliction … they gave … beyond their means” (2 Corinthians 8:2-3).
Their faith had been tested by their own current hardship, but they demonstrated faith to give, in spite of that hardship. They gave because God had given to them, and they wanted God to use them to bless those who were lacking in Jerusalem.
A rightly ordered faith in God through Christ results in at least three key things: an eternal view of life; contentment in what He has provided; and, a readiness to give sacrificially as He has so richly given to us.
I have seen this lived out in many places around the world where believers have almost nothing. May God give us the grace to walk this way, and give this way, as well.