With Reckless Abandon

by DanWolgemuth on September 5, 2008

For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on. ~ Mark:12:44

As Jesus peers across the Temple, He looks deeply into the souls of the congregants. He wasn’t auditing their actions, instead He was investigating their hearts and assessing their motivation.

His description and commendation of the widow rings into the darkest recesses of my own patterns of living and giving. When Jesus highlights and applauds the strategy of giving “out of her poverty” I am convicted to the core. The implication and application of this truth is vital in my understanding of the love of Christ, as it transparently reveals the depth of my own trust in His care for me.

I’ve learned to risk, only from a place of safety.
To love, only from a place of security.
To defend, only from a place of certainty.
To explore, only from a place of predictability.
To dream, only from a place of realism.
To give, only from a place of plenty.

This is not the plan of Jesus. It is not His approach to living with the abandon of a soul set free. Jesus trumpets the concept of generous living from a place of desperation and brokenness.

We love, because He first loved us.
We give, because He emptied the treasury of heaven for us.
We risk, because our safety is found in Christ alone.
We forgive, because He forgave.
We defend the defenseless, because it was for them that He wielded His sword.
We abandon bias and prejudice, because His assessment of the soul is beyond our ability.
We reconcile, because He alone is judge.
We live “out of our poverty,” because it is there that we can plumb the depth of our worth in Him.

It is no sacrifice to give from a full account. And Jesus, our model and master, knows the pain of our sacrifice, the depth of the well from which our gifts are given. Jesus knows.

From across the Temple He looks intently, and as He does, He sees well beyond my action and clearly into my motivation and sacrifice.

I give and live from a place of confidence in Jesus, not the safety of self-reliance.

It is out of our poverty that we tap into the limitless love of Jesus.

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