Joni and Friends Blog
No Gift Too Small
“He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. ‘I tell you the truth,’ he said, ‘this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.'”Luke 21:2-4
Recently our ministry delivered wheelchairs to people in homes and institutions in Africa, including the Ghana Society for Crippled Boys. These African boys, for the most part, are disabled from polio. Without wheelchairs they have to drag themselves through the dirt, using their hands.
They wear shoes on their hands. They spend their weekends begging on the streets. Then, during the weekdays, they come to the Society and learn how to use sewing machines so they can develop a job skill. The Society is just a couple of cinder block huts with rusty, corrugated tin roofs…no running water…a few bare lightbulbs. But you should have seen the boys’ smiles when we gave three wheelchairs (they were all we had at that point). They stopped in the middle of their work at the sewing machines to sing and clap for us with that wonderful African harmony.
I looked at the few chairs we had presented. They barely scratched the surface of need. Were we really making a difference? Was the gift meaningful? Maybe it was a gesture that only frustrated them. Perhaps it was so small that it was a mockery.
But then I remembered the words of an African pastor I met earlier that day. “No gift given to the Lord is ever too small,” he said. That’s the lesson I learned in Ghana, and it’s a lesson we would do well to learn here. Nothing is unworthy of the Lord when it is given in his name—especially when it’s all we have to give, such as the two copper coins given by the widow in today’s passage. No action is unimportant, no effort too tiny.
Today you can give some gift of encouragement, some action, some small prayer. Remember, no gift is too small.
God of the widow with the mite, show me what small contribution I can make to others today—a word, a prayer, a kindness. Keep me from withholding it because of its size.
A Step Further continues the autobiography of Joni. Here, we read more of her personal journey into suffering and what she’s discovered along the way.