Giving God our Leftovers

Posted by James Hahn on

Luke 21:1-4
Feast of the Presentation of the Virgin Mary

"And what I have leftover, I give unto you O Lord!" Of course I would never pray that privately or out loud. Yet, that is often the way I live. I often give the Lord leftovers. I give money that I can part with. I give my time in prayer when I can fit it in. I seek to help others when I am not busy with my own cares. Leftovers.

What if I did that with my other personal relationships? What would my life be like if I gave my family the money I have leftover after spending all that I wanted to spend? How would my children behave if I gave them the time I had leftover after doing all that I want to do first? What would my marriage look like if I helped my wife with household chores only after I completed my pet projects?

In today's Gospel Jesus shows me two ways of living my life. I can be like the "wealthy" and give from my abundance, what I have extra, leftovers. Or, I can be like the "poor widow" and give what I have from my heart even sacrificing my own needs and desires out of love for God and others.

In this Gospel, Jesus is not looking at the amount given but the heart behind it. He tells me that the widow gave more, not because of the amount, but because she gave with a generous heart. She made a sacrifice out of love for God whereas the others gave leftovers.

Lord, help me to keep the leftovers for myself and give You and others the best of my time, talent, and treasure. Show me this day one opportunity for me to have leftovers and give the best to others in my life, friends, family, co-workers, and strangers. Give me the grace to give from my needs and not from what I have leftover!

FROM THE SAINTS - "The Lord does not look at the amount offered but at the affection with which it is offered." - Saint John Chrysostom

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