Solidarity With The Destitute

Today I have no comments to make, but rather just a quote to share.  Consider what Dallas Willard has to say about the way we address those who are materially poor.  This quote is from The Spirit of The Disciplines – a book worth reading and re-reading.

“By contrast, those without the mind of Christ make a use of distinctions between people the mature disciple would never make.  They cannot respect the poor within their value system.  Even their special efforts, no matter how “charitable,” emphasize their lack of solidarity with the poor.  They are of course trying “to be big about it.” But disciples, whose very life is a gift of incarnation, really see nothing special in their actions toward the unblessables.  They are not “being big about it” because they truly see nothing to be big about in the situation.  The left hand simply does not know what the right hand is doing (Matt 6:3).”

Our problem is not primarily with how we see the poor, but with how we see ourselves.  If we still think and convey by our behavior that in some way we are fundamentally different and better as persons from the man sleeping in the discarded boxes in the alley, we have not been brought with clear eyes to the foot of the cross, seeing our own neediness in the light of it.  We have not looked closely at the lengths to which God had to go to reach us.  We have not learned to live always and thankfully in the cross’s shadow.  From that vantage point alone is our solidarity with the destitute to be realized.”   The Spirit of the Disciplines.  p 211

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