Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: FAMOUS (02/27/20)
- TITLE: One Unnoticed Act
By Phillip Cimei
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“God sure has blessed her with grace and beauty. Everyone has been talking about how well she has managed her husband’s success.” came the response of another, followed by a ”Humph.”
The green-eyed monster was knocking at the door of these ladies as Elizabeth meandered through the market place. But to their amazement, she neither tarnished her natural beauty with artificial dazzlement, nor her station in life with arrogance or pride.
“Good morning, ladies. Hasn’t the Lord blessed us with such tranquil breezes today? It makes shopping so pleasant. How have you been?” Elizabeth said with warm overtones.
Elizabeth was blessed to have sufficient means to purchase her household needs without concern or worry. She lacked nothing, but this would soon change.
Elizabeth, as usual, busied herself preparing the most delicious meal for her hard-working spouse and her children. Today, savory leg of lamb. A glow overtook her, garnished with a contentful smile, as she skillfully prepared the dish. She whisked back a strand of hair that seemed to tease her patience. After wiping her perspiring brow, she smirked a little bit then begin singing her favorite psalm. Then came the knock on the door.
She wasn’t expecting company, but her home was always open to all, and of course, her first whisper of concern was, “Do I have enough for some company? Oh, my, I might have to send the children to the market.” She straightened her apron, brushed her disheveled hair back, and opened the door.
It was Matthew, her husband, John’s best friend. He stood stonefaced, “My dear, Elizabeth,” he said, followed by a slow, deep inhale and puffs of exhaling mingled with sobs. “John is dead.”
“What!” Furrows of fright deepened on her forehead as her brow was thrust up by bulging eyes. If only tragic news could come in small palatable measures. Not this news.
“Elizabeth,” Matthew could barely whisper out through quivering lips, “John, was killed today by some vicious thieves.”
Everything else he said was just a blur as Elizabeth fell to her knees, wailed out pleas to God with raised, opened palmed hands— like a child begging a parent to pick them up. Her life and the lives of her children would now be changed.
Elizabeth’s visits to the marketplace would become less frequent. And her style of shopping would change. Now, it was begging for over-ripened fruits and vegetables. Giggles and finger-pointing carried the stale smell of contempt, not envy.
“Mom, why don’t people recognize us anymore,” asked the oldest child. “Everyone knew us and treated us friendly. But now we are not recognized by them. And they treat us like dirt because we have to beg for everything. Has God forgotten us?”
“Son, God never forgets His children. He loves them and will always provide for them. Some times He tests our hearts to check our faith,” she countered
“Yeah, but people laugh at us because of the rags we wear. They honored us before, but now we are nothing,” he said with a heavy heart.
“God will provide for us, maybe not in material things like we used to have, but He will provide,” she said as they went on their way to worship services.
At the front entrance were the offering containers. Elizabeth reached into her little cloth bag while waiting for her turn. She could hear, “Clink, clink, clink clink clink.” She wasn’t either envious as to the abundance of the large coins cast with vigor into the container, nor impressed with the demeaning look of contempt shed her way as the contributor took his prominent seat to worship.
Elizabeth meekly, but with an air of contentment, reached into her makeshift purse and pulled out all she had. With no hesitation, she dropped it in the container, “Clink, clink.” She swiftly guided her children to a prayerful position at the back and poured out her heart to her Father in heaven.
On the way home, her oldest child asked her, “Why did you give all we had? Nobody will ever know or even care what you gave.”
“Maybe they didn’t notice, but every act of worship, even the most seemingly insignificant act, is received in heaven as a treasure and laid at the feet of God. How remarkable is that?
Note by author
The story is a fictional account of the teaching of Jesus about the widow’s mites. This teaching can be found in Luke 21:1-4 and Mark12:41-44.
The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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