Should the Poor Give?

When I use the word tithe on this site, I refer to it as the disciplined habit of giving.  I know that when you hear the word tithe you might hear me saying a 10% gift to your local church where God will bonk you on the head if you don’t give.  I don’t mean tithe in that ways, so when you read the word tithe please insert my definition not your own :). Should the Poor Give?  … [Read more...]

What is the Cause of Poverty?

Ok.  Here we go.  It’s time to dive into the always sensitive topic of poverty. If you think the question I asked in the post title – what is the cause of poverty - can be answered in one concise sentence, then I’m going to guess you’ve never seriously thought about the question.  Everyone I know who has spent any time in the presence of the poor acknowledges the complexity of the … [Read more...]

Are We Making Minimum Payments to the Poor?

If you are part of a church, can I ask you to consider something I’ve been thinking about lately? Are we, as a church, making minimum payments to the poor?  Or better yet, am I, as an individual, making minimum payments to the poor? All of us know that if you make minimum payments on credit card debt, you are basically just treading water.  When you make minimum payments, the situation … [Read more...]

The Rich and Poor: My Interview With The Poor People of PNG

I am a rich person.  By the end of this article, you might conclude that you are a rich person too. I’ve long since wondered what I should do with the awkwardness that I feel knowing that I am rich in the presence of those with whom I minister. A little about my context: My wife and I live in Alotau (city), Milne Bay Province, Papua New Guinea (country).  I live a double life.  To many of … [Read more...]

What are the characteristics of the poor, middle class, and wealthy?

There are a whole slew of ways to define if someone is poor, middle class, or wealthy.  The following chart is one of the most helpful resources I have encountered because it holistically deals with many different characteristics between the poor, middle class, and wealthy.  How do the middle class characteristics compare with your own?  Do you related to the characteristics of the poor? The … [Read more...]

Poor Man Wins Lottery – Will it Help or Hurt Him?

The following is a short article from The Hamilton Spectator on Saturday, June 6, 2009. A 23-year-old rancher whose family has fallen behind in its taxes and recently had a mobile home repossessed, claimed a $232.1 million Powerball jackpot yesterday, one of the largest single jackpot in the U.S. lottery history … He will take home $88.5 in a lump sum payment after taxes are deducted.  … “I want … [Read more...]

Solution to Poverty? Is it Money?

For the last three years I have been living in Papua New Guinea (PNG).  Here are some quick facts to familiarize you with the economic condition there.  The remainder of this post focuses specifically on issues of the poor related to third world countries like PNG. 85% of PNG citizens are sustenance farmers.  This means they live off of what they grow in their gardens. The majority of homes … [Read more...]