Increasing beggars or helping friends

The dynamics of a relationships are interesting. In my experience truly healthy relationships require some measure of equality in the power balance. I’ve noticed this several times when I have been promoted. Suddenly relationships that used to feel very comfortable and open start to close up and the natural open conversations that used to happen are now somehow forced.

What happens when we give help to someone? Does it change the balance? Do we become the “haves” and they the “have nots”. Can giving and being generous actually be more harmful than helpful?

My thoughts on this have started to change with reading the book “Toxic Charity” by Robert Lupton. When I give my time or my resources to someone what I really want is to invest in them as a person, not in their shop, house or project. I want to help people to become everything they are meant to be. And my aim is to help people who in their turn can help others. But how can we do that? Recent experiences and reading this book have started to shape new ideas and thoughts and unless we learn ways to manage our giving responsibly we are simply on a journey to make yet another beggar.  Generosity turns from a blessing into a curse when it creates dependant people. What we must strive towards is an investment in the person that helps them towards becoming self sufficient. Only this way will the people we seek to help reap the reward in self esteem, character strength and responsibility that is necessary for them to be equal and help the next man.

God give us wisdom in this area as we plan for the future. Amen

One thought on “Increasing beggars or helping friends

  1. So glad you have read the book, we can do more harm than good if we just run in and take over and pour money in. I urge you to read When Helping Hurts by Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert, there is a study group you can do which is a must before we run in and take over as westerners (so to speak). I also read Toxic Charity first but found When Helping Hurts much more informative and gives practical steps to alleviate Poverty. I’ve been following your posts, I’m so glad you are going down this road, God Bless and continue your great work!!!!!! Please read when helping hurts, you will be glad you did, and your efforts won’t be in vain.


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