Today’s Gospel: Mark 12:38-44
We are familiar with the story of the “widow’s mite”. She serves as an example to us that we should be generous like her. Sometimes we hear that message so often we become desensitized to it. It’s a message we often hear in our respective parishes anytime they want to highlight their stewardship program. Perhaps this message is used to take a swipe at the rich for not giving more. It’s obvious that we live in a world where wealth among nations is not equal due to circumstance or lack of ingenuity.
I’d like to suggest another interpretation of this story. It puts on display the riches of poverty. That may sound odd in our hyper-consumerism-driven society. Our society tends to view poverty as a problem that needs to be solved. However, it can be a virtue. This poor widow in today’s Gospel becomes our example as she teaches a valuable lesson.
The poor grow in spirituality not by receiving or acquiring. They do so by letting go. Living a life of authentic Christianity is all about letting go. Think about what we are taught in the Gospels. We are told to let go of judgement, status, reputation, competition, power, control and the desire to be number one. What it takes to accomplish all of this is to let go of ourselves and our ambitions and instead take hold of the message of Jesus Christ.
This is where we find the poor widow. She’s not worried about acquiring the newest vehicle, or what cable package she is going to select. She is not worried about how to climb another rung higher on the corporate ladder. She has none of these concerns. Instead she has found the perfect place for her and for us. She has found the spot where God dwells, and she is happier for it.
What area of your life can you improve upon to gain the spirituality of poverty?
Lord, please help us to rid ourselves of the mentality of a consumer-driven society. Open our eyes to the spiritual benefits of living simply.
Copyright 2017 Pete Socks
Pete Socks converted to the Catholic faith in 1996. You can find his reviews, author interviews and weekly giveaways at the website he founded, The Catholic Book Blogger. He also serves as a Managing Editor and writer for Catholic Stand When not reading and writing, Pete is the happily married father of five working his way through life in rural PA.