The two widows perform acts of great generosity. The widow in Elijah’s time, though living through a time of famine, was willing to share the little food that she had with the prophet who for her was a complete stranger. The widow in the gospel gave her last coin to the Temple’s offertory box.
On the other hand, the scribes are the ones who gave utmost importance to the exterior, but they were interiorly corrupt to the extent of taking the property of widows.
The difference between these two groups of people comes from their relationship with God or the lack of it. The widows acted generously because they trusted in God. Their lives were rooted in God. The scribes were grounded in what others thought of them. They were motivated not by their relationship with God, but by their public image.
The widows, being animated by God’s love, gave glory to God with their actions. They knew how deeply they were loved by God, how generous God had been in his love, and that was enough for them. They were basking in God’s love for them.
The scribes had not basked in God’s love. They did not let themselves experience the depth of God’s love for them and what they did was not the reflection of who they were. They did actions that were meant to please God, but their lives were not pleasing to God. They did not know who they were, that is persons loved by God, and therefore they did not know how to act as persons loved by God.
Do we really know how much God loves us? The author of the Letter to the Hebrews reminds us of God’s love and tells us that Christ came to take away our sins by his sacrifice. We need to reflect on God’s love for us in His Son Jesus Christ. We need to realize and experience how lavishly God bestows his love upon us.
Let us ask ourselves again: What is the motivating force in our lives? Is it God’s love for us or our love for ourselves, that is, is it true love or distorted love?