Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

This blog will be written from an orthodox Christian point of view. There may be some topic that is out of bounds, but at present I don't know what it will be. Politics is a part of life. Theology and philosophy are disciplines that we all participate in even if we don't think so. The Bible has a lot to say about economics. How about self defense? Is war ethical? Think of all the things that someone tells you we should not touch and let's give it a try. Everything that is a part of life should be an expression of worship.

Keep it courteous and be kind to those less blessed than you, but by all means don't worry about agreeing. We learn more when we get backed into a corner.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Opus 2011-61, Discernment Watch: Charity Giving

Do you respond when you hear a radio appeal for a well known charity?  How about direct mail?  Can they count on you?  After all, we are supposed to be concerned for the poor and needy.

I am very selective about who receives my hard earned money.  It is never a matter of giving or not giving, it is a matter of to whom or what.  People who claim we need to help the poor are right but have you ever thrown seed out to a group of hungry birds?  Have you ever put food down for a bunch of ravenous puppies?  Have you ever watched what happens?  The ones who need it the most don’t get any.  It is the pushy and aggressive that reap the reward.  I would suggest to you that the same is true of people looking for handouts.  Those who need it the most either will not ask or get pushed aside.

We have a responsibility to use discernment in our giving.  If you only have $100 dollars to give to the needy do you want $90 to go to high paid executives and direct mail campaigns?  Or would you rather have $90 go directly to food, shelter, clothing and medical supplies?  I think the answer is obvious. 

That means we need to get out of our cars, out of our neighborhoods, out of our comfort zones and actually look and listen.  You will find single parents, working hard and getting further behind every month.  They can’t be out on the corner begging, they have to work.  You will find seniors who have moved to the smallest apartment they can find.  They are too frail to stand in front of the local 7/11 and risk being mugged by those who claim it as their spot.  You won’t find them unless you look.

I am very selective about who receives my blood, literally.  I used to donate blood to the Red Cross.  I gradually began to notice some things though.  More and more the Red Cross began to seem like big business instead of an avenue to help the needy.  I heard stories about World War II.  They would be selling coffee and donuts to the GI’s when the Salvation Army was giving them away.  I remember how they misused the funds generated after 9/11.  I am sure that they do a lot of good things, but they may not be the best investment for your love dollars.  In fact, I would say that any organization that has a national advertising presence will waste most of your money.

So give.  Generously.  But give in ways that involve you and actually help the people in need.

homo unius libri

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Comments are welcome. Feel free to agree or disagree but keep it clean, courteous and short. I heard some shorthand on a podcast: TLDR, Too long, didn't read.