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The Widow's Mite: Giving My All

In nearly every context of my life--as a husband, father, teacher, employee, and in my Church calling, I often feel that I'm not doing enough. Beyond that, I feel--frequently--that my natural resources and talents in these areas are simply not sufficient. It's not so much that I am holding back, as much as it is I just don't feel like I have as much to give.

That lack of sufficiency is something I feel on my own, but it's especially true in comparison with many others who seem to be so much better equipped than I to excel in these areas.

I know we're not supposed to compare ourselves to others, and it's not as if I sit around wallowing in this feeling. I push forward as best I can and experience a lot of joy in these areas. But still, from time to time, I feel that little nagging sense of lacking.

In this context, I read a verse I've read many times, but it hit me in a different way. I don't, incidentally, claim that this is a terribly unique insight. I'm sure others have seen and applied this before. But it was unique to me, to my experience and it brought me some comfort.

While Jesus was teaching in the temple, the scriptures say:

"And he looked up and saw the rich men casting their gifts into the treasury. And he saw also a certain poor widow casting in thither two mites. And he said, 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 penury hath cast in all the living that she had." (Luke 21: 1-4)

I read this and realized that I'm giving all I can. The question is not whether there are others more talented or capable than I am: there are. And always will be. The question is not whether others can contribute more. They can. The question is whether I am giving all I can, all I have.


Braden Bell is a husband, father, teacher, director, and author. He blogs about all of these things at

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