Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The story of the woman who gave everything

Based on Mark 12.41-44

Two people with smarties. One gives 5 smarties. One person gives 10 smarties. Who gives the most?

Now I'm going to give you a little more information. The person who gave 10 smarties had 10 packs of smarties. The person who gave 5 smarties only had 5 smarties. Who gave more?

Perhaps we would still say the person who gave 10 smarties, but they still had loads of smarties left over for themselves.
But I think that it was the person who gave 5 smarties - because they gave everything that they had.

Jesus was sitting at the entrance to the temple. He watched people put their money in the glass box. Many people put in large sums of money. £10. £100. £10000. WOW WOW WOW.  Look how much they are giving. They are such generous people.
A woman came in. She was very poor. She put in £1. Nobody said wow. In fact nobody noticed. Nobody except Jesus.

And Jesus called his friends together. They were still looking at the WOW person who had given £10000. Did you see that? He is amazing. Jesus said, 'Not really'. He is very very rich and it cost him nothing to give that amount of  money. He has got 100s of 1000s of pounds left. But that woman, who put in £1. That was all she had to live on for the rest of this week. She gave everything that she had.

It was only £1. Nobody noticed. But God noticed. And God said WOW

In a church in a town in Italy there are some of the earliest known illustrations of scenes from the life of Jesus. This picture shows this scene

Jesus is in the middle on the right. One of his friends is on the right. He is praying. And Jesus is blessing the woman who is giving. I have always thought of this widow as someone who was stooped and bowed. But here she stands upright with an immense dignity.

When we give, not to be noticed, and when we give - and I mean really give: you put all your weeks pocket money into a collection - nobody else will notice because it is not much. But you know. And although other people think that you are very little and insignificant, inside you can know that you are really big and tall.
And best of all, Jesus notices, and he says WOW 

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