I can finally relate to a “good guy” in the Bible.
(Don’t you find that we usually end up relating to the “bad guy” . . . the older brother in the story of the prodigal son, the younger brother in the prodigal son, the self-protecting priest in the story of the Good Samaritan, and the haughty Pharisees?)
It comes as a relief to finally see myself in a person that Jesus said was doing the right thing. Surprisingly, when I put myself in her shoes, I don’t feel as awesome and righteous as I thought I might. In fact, there’s a part of me that feels humbled and sad.
First, a short story . . .
Lately, I feel like I am giving 100 percent—leaving it all on the court—just to mother my five children. Yet I miss serving the Lord outside of our home. I think it’s important to reach my arms out in kindness, for Christ’s sake as well as for my children’s sake. So I look for opportunities when I’m able.
An Opportunity to Serve
We recently had a chance to serve someone outside of our family.
Late one night, tragedy hit a dear friend of mine. I heard about it in the morning and packed the kiddos up as quickly as I could. We arrived at her apartment to sit with her. It was wonderful to be able to do that. The children were considerate and compassionate. My friend was the least-needy person on the face of the planet. I rubbed her back when she cried, we chatted, and we helped her run an errand. After noon, we headed home for the baby’s naptime.
By the time we got in the door, our strength was sapped. We were practically gasping for air.
The kids fell apart instantly. Crying, fussing, fogginess . . . we all muddled around for lunch, ate, and crashed. My highly compassionate/emotionally tuned child was so drained, he took a very uncharacteristic nap. I couldn’t get dinner on the table, and I didn’t have any emotional availability for my husband when he came home from work.
To tell you the truth, we didn’t really regain our footing for a couple of days. We gave everything we had. But it wasn’t even that much.
When We Give So Little
I felt crushed before the Lord. “Why don’t I have more strength? I want to serve You, but the simplest things wear me out! I wish I had more emotional rebound, more energy. I wish I could keep going after serving someone.”
He said, “Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on” (Luke 21:3–4).
She’s the “good guy” to whom I can relate: the poor widow who gave all she had.
I look at her and say, “Yes, I feel like her. I know I’m not nearly as generous as she, but I feel like I’m offering as much as I can. And I feel like it’s only two mites worth.”
Can you relate to her, too? Are you giving everything you’ve got and wondering why it seems so little?
(Share this with a woman who is giving everything she’s got? She’ll be encouraged to know that she’s not the only one… and that Jesus sees her sacrifice and will fill her back up again.)