Poverty

There’s a power in poverty that breaks principalities;
that brings the authorities down to their knees.
There’s a brewing frustration and ageless temptation
to fight for control by some manipulation.
 
But the God of the Kingdoms and God of the Nations,
the God of Creation sends this revelation
to the homeless and penniless: Jesus, the Son!
The Poor will inherit the Kingdom to Come!
 
Where will we turn when our world falls apart
and all of the treasures we’ve stored in our barns
can’t buy the Kingdom of God?
 
And who will we praise when we’ve praised all our lives
men who build kingdoms and men who build fame
when Heaven does not know their names?
 
And what will we fear when all that remains
is God on the throne with a child in His arms
And love in His eyes,
and the sound of His heartcries?
 
 

I’ve been re-re-reading Crazy Love and Chan mentions a question that one of his professors in college would ask: “What are you doing today that requires faith?” That question resonated with me because honestly, there isn’t anything going on in my life right now that requires me to have faith. I have a steady income, good health insurance, a grocery store down the street, and the biggest anxiety I face is if it’s going to be good hiking weather this weekend.

I live in a bubble where there isn’t room for faith. Faith is risky and it’s so much easier to settle into security, comfort, and status quo. We congratulate ourselves for not being like those silly Israelites who went around worshipping wood and gold statues immediately after witnessing God’s work in their midst, but how quickly do we lay our offerings at the feet of Retirement Plan and worship Flat Panel Screen?

What would it look like for an American Christian to truly live in a way that required faith? My mind goes first to money because we are filthy, stinking rich, but there are certainly other things that require faith of us. It takes faith to step into situations where you could be in trouble if God doesn’t come through. That could mean standing for justice at my job or speaking truth that might cause me to lose relationships. But mostly it’s about money, because that is what we have faith in in this country.

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