Its The Thought That Counts

Nov 6, 2012 | Uncategorized

Luke 21:1-4 “While Jesus was in the Temple, he watched the rich people dropping their gifts in the collection box. Then a poor widow came by and dropped in two small coins. ‘I tell you the truth,’ Jesus said, ‘this poor widow has given more than all the rest of them. For they have given a tiny part of their surplus, but she, poor as she is, has given everything she has.’”

Opfer der armen Witwe – Fresko (F2), Basilika Ottobeuren by Johannes Böckh & Thomas Mirtsch

The popular saying, “it’s not the gift that counts, it’s the thought that counts.” is a pretty messed up saying. You may have said this yourself when you gave a Christmas gift that some may think is below a certain standard just to justify yourself.

This is actually a negative saying if you think about it. What is usually the context when we say it? We say it when people notice that our gift is not as big or as expensive as it “should be.” We say it when we think that what we gave is not as grand. This saying is a scapegoat. We should not be saying it at all!

Notice how Jesus slams this saying even it was not yet even a fad to say it during the time He walked on earth. Did Jesus say to all those listening, “this widow only gave two small coins, but it’s the thought that counts.” No, He did not. He actually commends the sacrifice of the widow. She gave all that she had!

Some may say that it’s easier to give all when you have nothing at all. That’s ridiculous! Those are probably the words of someone who has not yet gone hungry! When you give everything you have, it’s EVERYTHING! Even how small some people may think it to be. When we think like this, we actually despise the gift. It’s not how big or small. It is how you give the gift. It’s what is in your heart when you give a gift. Were the rich people at fault when they give a huge sum? I don’t think so. What makes it wrong is the pomp and pride that sometimes accompany the giving of the gift. Even poor people give with a haughty attitude when giving just a few pesos. They are embarrassed when giving a meager amount.

Jesus is not concerned with the amount! He is concerned with what is in your heart when you give. Rich people display their richness and poor people hide their poverty. Both have problems. We should give with a humble and thankful heart whatever our financial standing. We do not have to have our names written on a wall just to be recognized or crumple a 20 peso bill because that is all you can afford. No! Jesus will always love you and will not reject you–big or small gift notwithstanding.

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