I have read the passage before, but today God challenged me afresh and anew! In my Bible reading plan, I have been working my way through the book of Luke. Jesus is performing miracles, sharing about prayer, and then bam. In Luke 21:1-4 we find these words, “Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the offering box, and he saw a poor widow put in two small copper coins. And 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.’”
It is the living out and perfect illustration of the Philippians 4:19 principle that I heard the day before. Chip Ingram shared that this promise is for believers, but not all believers. It is for those who are being good stewards and using their finances to bless others sacrificially. The Philippian church was not the richest, but they made it a priority to partner with Paul and gave to his ministry. They denied their wants to help meet the needs of another. Therefore, Paul writes to them to encourage them. “And my God will supply your every need according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.”
The Philippians have given sacrificially, and they now have less money than they had before making their gift. However, there is no need to worry, panic, or question whether they should have given to Paul. God is going to meet their needs.
Yes, there have been times when I looked at my bank account and made a logical decision not to give because it seemed like we couldn’t afford it. If I give to this need, how will we have money for groceries and gas for the rest of the month? But from Luke 21 and Philippians 4, God is saying to give. Be generous. If I am a believer, using my resources well, and walking by faith with sacrificial giving, then I can know that God will supply my needs. Not all my wants, but my needs.
And here’s another challenging thought. God may have already supplied all your needs, but you have purchased some “wants.” So in order to meet your needs, you may have to sell some of those “wants” you possess. The need is food and shelter, but the “want” is a new vehicle, a bigger house, or updated technology. God’s grace has supplied the needs, but to meet them, the “wants” may have to go. Do you already have what you need, but you are living beyond your needs?
The widow Jesus talked about gave sacrificially. She didn’t have an abundance. However, she rested in the promise that God would supply all her needs. That is why she could give out of her poverty all she had to live on.
What does our giving say about us? Can we live like the widow and claim the promise of Philippians 4:19? Or are we relying on our thoughts and making decisions based on our logic? As we seek God through His Word and prayer, may we be challenged in how we handle money, and may we remember that Jesus said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35)