Giving From Our Poverty

He said, “I tell you truly, this poor widow put in more than all the rest, for those others have all made offerings from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood.”    Luke 21:3-4

12 14 17 with word overlayI love Thanksgiving weekend!

Every year, we have dinner with our extended family on Thursday, get our tree on Friday, let the branches fall on Saturday while we run around decorating the house, and then we decorate the tree on Sunday. The weekend culminates with the taking of the infamous Christmas card photo on Sunday night.

We have it all down to a science, including the drama that ensues during the picture taking. This year was no different…

The drama is always the same: My kids don’t stand still and smile for the camera, and I scream and yell because of it. Without fail, at least one child ends up in tears, and I have smoke coming out my ears. You’d think we’d have learned by now: If they posed without complaint, and I held my patience, it would be a breeze.

My kids and I are like the wealthy people in Luke 21. We do great when we’re well rested and unrushed. When we have that surplus of time and energy, they do what they’re supposed to, and I’m the pleasant mom leading them.

What we’re not good at is giving from our poverty. When we’re tired and stressed, they go bonkers, and I lose my cool. When I’m trying to take a Christmas photo on the Sunday night of a long and busy weekend, we’re definitely in the rest and relaxation poverty zone.

But that’s life: It’s filled with far more tired and stressed days, than rested and relaxed ones. If my kids and I wait for all the elements to be right and perfect, I’ll be taking our Christmas photo in July.

What we need to do is learn to give from our poverty, like the widow in this parable. Yes, it’s hard to give when our tanks are empty, but that’s when the giving counts so much more.

Questions For Reflection:

     * How do my kids and I act when we’re well rested and unrushed?

     * How do we act when we’re tired and stressed?

     * Can we somehow rise above when our tanks are empty, and still give generously from our rest and relaxation poverty zone?

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