This is a beautiful passage in which Jesus gets practical. As followers of The Way, what are we supposed to do? What are we not supposed to do? Jesus draws our attention to a poor widow, whose behavior is a quiet lesson in this very thing – and quite a contrast to the noisy behavior of others. If we’re supposed to be givers like God, what does that behavior look like? Jesus points to the ultimate example.
I’ll include the story script I wrote below, for those of you from other churches who might like to use it. I hope it works well for you. If anyone asks where you got it, please direct them to this site. 🙂
Our Response Time
For our response time, children can express what it means to be a giver- and how to be a giver- however they like. Here are some ideas:
*Make your own giving bags, out of paper or duct tape or paper plates.
*Make a piggy bank for saving your money to give.
*Visit the sanctuary and examine the plates you pass or the giving envelopes.
*Make a mural of all the ways the church can use the money that people give.
*What are other ways we give to God, besides money? Make a list of words or drawings of ways people give to God.
For more ideas, see my Pinterest page for this story, here.
The Story Script: Jesus Teaches in the Temple
While Jesus did his work, healing, preaching, and telling stories, people listened to what he said. Even as Jesus went to Jerusalem, where he knew that his life would be in danger,
Add the cross to the end of the underlay.
Jesus made time for people. He spoke in the temple and changed people’s lives.
Add the temple.
As Jesus taught, many people listened. Some listeners were Jesus’s disciples and some were people who came there to worship. As people listened, Jesus talked about how those who love God are supposed to behave. He showed them what they’re not supposed to do and what they are supposed to do.
“Watch out for the people who are supposed to be experts on God’s Law,” he said.
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“They like to walk around wearing clothes that look important. And if you go out to the market place, you’ll see them walking around, hoping everybody notices how respected they are. They love to have the most important seats in the synagogues and to be the guest of honor at fancy dinners.
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But they cheat women whose husbands have died and trick them into taking away their homes. Then they try to make themselves look good by saying long prayers. This will get them into trouble with God.”
Then Jesus stopped talking.
He looked up and saw something happening in the Temple. The disciples and the other listeners looked up too. They wanted to see what Jesus was looking at.
Jesus was watching all the rich people coming close to the offering box. Everyone watched as they put their offerings into the box.
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They watched and they listened.
Pour offering into the box.
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So much money made such a noise!
Then Jesus watched as a poor widow came close to the offering box. A widow is a woman whose husband had died. Husbands were usually the ones back then who were allowed to earn money, so widows were very poor.
The widow put in her two small copper coins, the smallest coins there were.
Add two small coins to the offering box.
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The widow’s money made hardly any noise at all.
Jesus turned to the disciples and all the people who were listening. “Here’s the truth,” he said. “This widow gave by far the largest offering today. The rich have plenty, and they gave only what they did not need. This woman is very poor, but she gave all she had to live on!”
What a great giver she was!
Jesus knew that people listened to what he said. He knew that some people might get mad at him for saying it, but he wanted to show people how to get closer to God, so he bravely told the truth.
- I wonder what your favorite part of this story is.
- I wonder where you are in this story. I wonder what part of this story is about you?
- I wonder what God is trying to teach us in this story.
- I wonder what this story says about what God is like.