She was poor and a widow, not the greatest of position to be in during the first century. On this particular day, seemingly oblivious to what was going on around her and like she perhaps had done many times before, she approached the treasury – a place in the temple for the collection boxes. The Scribes were there doing what they did best. It wasn’t that long before that Jesus said of them, “Beware of the Scribes, which desire to walk in long robes, and love greetings in the markets, and the highest seats in the synagogues, and the chief rooms at feasts; which devour widows’ houses, and for a shew make long prayers” (Luke 20:46-47a, KJV). They would not have noticed her, neither would the rich men who were there casting their gifts.
As she reached the treasury, she cast in her two mites. When compared to what others had put in, hers wasn’t much; however, unknown to her there was a pair of eyes watching her. Not only did He see her but He could see right through her, deep into her intent and her heart. Despite her obvious poverty, instead of using the amount on herself she brought it to the temple. She was not giving out of her excess but sought to worship God out of her need. Christ saw that her heart was “in the right place” and said to those around Him, “Of a truth I say unto you, that this poor widow hath cast in more than they all: for all these have of their abundance cast in unto the offerings of God: but she of her [need] hath cast in all the living that she had” (vv. 3-4).
Bible Scholar Matthew Henry observes, “It was but two mites, which make a farthing; but Christ magnified it as a piece of charity exceeding all the rest: She has cast in more than they all. Christ does not blame her for indiscretion, in giving what she wanted herself, nor for vanity in giving among the rich to the treasury; but commended her liberality, and her willingness to part with what little she had for the glory of God, which proceeded from a belief of and dependence upon God’s providence to take care of her.”
It is not the size of the gift that matters, but that whatever we give to the Lord (and others for that matter) we give with the right attitude. Our giving is a form of worship. Paul admonishes, “Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7). So as you give to the Lord, in whatever form, do it with a cheerful and thankful heart. You will discover that “He that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness” (v.10). Because He knows the intent of every heart, it is He who judges the heart. How is your giving?