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Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Is Poverty a Non-Issue?

"Love God & Neighbor" -- Jesus
    I continue to be puzzled by poverty.  If we'd all do what we were taught as kids poverty would be a non-issue.  If we each were honest with ourselves and each other we would be far less likely to blame the poor for being poor.  If those of us who say we follow Jesus, took our imitation of Jesus seriously we wouldn't rest until those on the margins were treated with justice.  If....
     But I get stopped when I try to understand the complexities of economics, politics, and relationships.  I can see easily the inequities and problematic patterns of poverty , yet it's easy to justify my own inaction with relationships like family needs, politics that tap my self-interest, or fearing doing more harm than good in challenging economic realities.
    So the question is this, "Is poverty a non-issue?"  Because... it's not my fault...it's not my job...it's too big... or  we've loved one-another so well that it's gone.
    I would like to be able to give the "it's gone" answer, but that's not possible yet.   I'd like to say I never answer in any of the other ways, but that wouldn't be completely truthful.  Yet I would still like to work toward solving the poverty puzzle.  That's why I jump start my action with faith and  Circles, a cool national poverty initiative, supported by my church, that works to help people move from poverty to self-sustaining life;  it makes aims to give everyone enough money, friends, and meaning in their lives.
    That's why my wife and I work at living generously.  Like the strangers who have received lunch from my spouse.  Like, the tenth of our income that we plan to give away every year, as a minimum. So even when I fall short, I'm aware, growing, and, I hope, making a difference in my soul and for others.
    How do you deal with poverty?

1 comment:

  1. Thanks Dave, for the reminder that poverty IS a REAL ISSUE.

    I can begin by acknowledging that I'm poor in some ways, and rich in others. Then I can move to being more open to receiving the gifts of others, and more available to being a gift for others as well...Circles has helped me on that journey.