Are you tired yet of my blogging about helping the homeless for one weekend? Are you tired of hearing how there are so many needy people in Omaha?
I get tired, too. But then I see double personalities rising within me. One that knows I should be helping others, and diving into their lives, and the other which sees the commercial with the little malnourished children and changes the channel apathetically. One side says, "Go and give of your time. It's the very least you can do!" while the other side argues, "You don't have any money, and you're not a person of great importance, so what difference can you really make?"
Shane Claiborne's book has been really challenging me lately. Here is a small excerpt:
"Popular culture has taught us to believe that charity is a virtue. But for Christians, it is only what is expected. True generosity is measured not by how much we give away but by how much we have left, especially when we look at the needs of our neighbors...
The early Christians used to write that when they did not have enough food for the hungry people at their door, the entire community would fast until everyone could share a meal together... The early Christians said that if a child starves while a Christian has extra food, then the Christian is guilty of murder."
If you're like me, you might say something like, "Yeah, but I don't really know any homeless people or folks that are hungry."
But I'll bet you know exactly where to find them. (I do!)
And I'm writing this during the Christmas season, when it becomes painfully obvious which folks are the "haves" and which are the "have-nots." I can tell just by taking a walk and peeking at the trash who received a new iPod nano. I've even seen a couple of cars that don't yet have license plates that might have been a Christmas gift. Even I received some CDs and DVDs, while there are some people who would be happy for a fancy Christmas dinner...or just having a family to eat it with.
I don't know where I'm going with this blog. Maybe I don't have to need a direction. Maybe it just needs to be said. We're very blessed, and maybe part of Christ's call is seek social justice in our neighborhoods and cities, making sure the blessed are sharing with the poor and not hoarding.
But living that ideal and talking about it are two very different things...