Sunday, April 10, 2011

Celebrating Sacrifice - Discipleship 133

I've been drawn to the story of the widow's offering over the last number of days. There are two versions of this story in scripture: Mark 12:41-44 & Luke 21:1-4. Jesus and his disciples were at the temple observing the crowds. As they are watching other people, one woman catches their eye. Jesus notices a widow who comes to the temple to give her tithe. She places two small coins in the offering box worth a fraction of what others were putting into the offering plate. Jesus singles this woman out and praises her gift because it was a sacrificial gift...she gave all that she had.

I watched this new TV show called Secret Millionaire. The show follows a millionaire who secretly volunteers at a number of non-profit organizations. At the end of the show the millionaire reveals their identity and they then give monetary donations to each organization they have volunteered with. It's great that these places are receiving financial aid, but I couldn't help but think of the story of the widow once again. It's easy for us to celebrate the large donation of the significant decision that radically reshapes the landscape and context of our world. What I think is more difficult to do is to take time to celebrate what may seem to be the small and insignificant acts of kindness.

Is it more important to be charismatic or to be consistent in how we interact with others? Do we cheapen our relationships when we only see fit to celebrate the grand moments and seem less interested on the small victories along the journey?

I think part of being a disciple and someone who makes other disciples is learning to celebrate the small sacrifices which are more grand and elaborate than we realize. Small = consistent and leads to a greater capacity for generosity moving forward.

How are you going to celebrate sacrifice?

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A Little Something from Psalm 8

 Had a lot of fun with this one.