Reflection on Mark 12:38-44

“Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and be greeted with respect in the market places.”

Jesus warns against the religion of people who teach for selfish reasons and who use their status to draw attention to themselves.

While watching people bring their offerings to the temple, Jesus comments on the relative sacrifice being made by rich and poor people. The rich people give a small fraction of their wealth, but a poor widow who gives two small coins is giving everything she has to live on.

The Lord judges our words and actions differently to us. We tend to look at the outward appearance and make judgements. But God looks at our hearts and what really motivates us.

Any work that we do, or any gifts that we give, for the Lord must be done with an honest heart. Are my prayers in cell group really an expression of the hopes of my heart, or are they to impress other people? Do I give generously and sacrificially for church, missions and the poor, or is it spare change that I might just as easily spend on coffee?

Lord, examine my heart and enable me to see my true motives in serving you and in giving to others. Cleanse me from every impure motive. Amen.


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