Monday, July 18, 2011

Charity begins at home, doesn't it?

For the last few years, I've given a lot of thought to the fact that so many young people I know at churches in the Southern California area go to Mexico to help build homes there and otherwise help out. Our church has a retired pastor who's trying to raise money to send to Mexico, too.  I'm against it.

I've thought for a few years now is that America's an excellent cause, too.   I think of urban areas which seriously need help.  I think of disasters like Katrina and our Midwest flooding and the Joplin tornadoes, and I people have gone to those places to help, but why not devote most of our time and money to US?

Yes, if you are a leftwinger, sadly, I've learned from much experience here at the blog and elsewhere that, instead of debating this question, I'll be called a racist and xenophobe.  Fine, what do I care?   But, I think rational people need to consider this, don't you?

Our country's really hurting now;  not just inner city families, not just poor Appalachian families; every family could use help today.   Are Americans not a great cause?   How about young American kids getting together and helping our own?


sue said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Always On Watch said...

I think of urban areas which seriously need help.

I do know of one Northern Virginia church that does significant work in the inner city of D.C. This same church does send missionaries all over the world, but, at the same time, doesn't ignore missionary and ministry work here in America.

Speedy G said...

Didn't you know that mommy government has outlawed charity at home, as that is HER responsibility now?

You pastor is doing the only thing a sensible person CAN do without becoming an "enemy of the people". He's performing REAL charity... of the kind that comes from a VOLUNTARY donation and not a COMPULSORY tax extracted under threat of incarceration.

Joe said...

I understand your position, but would like to point out that almost every American has the opportunity to better his/her plight, while those in many other countries do not have either the opportunity or the ability to better themselves.

Additionally, many church groups and other non-profits DO help less fortunate Americans.

Those points made, I think it is importatnt for churches to make their decisions based on a balanced understanding of needs, wherever they are.

Once the decision is made, Scripture requires that we act as one in unity.

Brooke said...

I couldn't agree more, Z. While helping others is nice, we need to get our own house in order.

And you're absolutely right; Ducky should be along shortly to call you a racist for even posing this very legitimate question.

Elmers Brother said...

We got an email from the local chamber of commerce asking for help for a young family who live on the border of our county and the adjacent one. The adjacent county wouldn't help despite having a program to help those in there situation because their address is in out county. Our county which is mostly rural has no such program. Our church and friends are organizing funds to help them. This is what we do, we don't need a gov't program just good neighbors.

Sam Huntington said...

I agree with you, Miss Z … but I suspect that people perform these services where recipients appreciate the effort and expenditure; in too many locations here in America, people regard such projects as their entitlements. And they don't take care of them, either.

Z said...

Sue...the shape our country's in especially the last 2 years, we might need help from Third World Country kids.

AOW, sure there are some. I'm glad to hear that.

Speedy, and my retired pastor friend is certainly entitled to doing whatever he wants with his money and to encourage other church members to do the same.
All I'm suggesting is that it wouldn't be a bad idea to help US.

Joe, that's a very good point about other countries not having the opportunities.I believe that some Americans don't anymore, either.....and it would give them a shot in the arm to think other Americans think enough of them to help.

Brooke, thanks.......I actually might do a post on the comment Ducky left that I haven't published....
I never knew anybody could be that stupid, presumptuous, and nasty. Even Ducky! :-)

Elbro; that's what all AMericans should be doing. THanks for that.

Speedy G said...

All I'm suggesting is that it wouldn't be a bad idea to help US.

...but if we all helped ourselves, what would we need our government for? Are you trying to put honest civil servants out of work? How could they collect their overly generous pensions, then? You must hate America.

Z said...

Sam, that's a good point. Actually, I've told the story before which I heard where a nurse went to Dallas to help Katrina victims and said they all sat on cots smoking, waiting for someone to pick up around them, so we had to bring Mexicans in who would, for pay, of course.
You have a good point.

Our job is not only to help those who are appreciative but it sure does help, doesn't it. Maybe that's what we want our kids from churches doing, anyway, helping those who appreciate their efforts, not learning what some Americans are like in their Democrat-inspired entitlement begging.


Anonymous said...

Adding to what Sam contributed, there's another side to this issue. I am in Central America, in Honduras. The attitude here is best expressed by what you hear from the children, 'Give me dollar'.

There is very little motivation to work when everything is given to you. When donations ebb, theft and robbery are the next option. Then there are the few who work, almost exclusively women. Even then, business owners are looted by their employees at every turn.

This is the culture here. My advice would be limit charity to your own family, neghborhood and church. Only when people learn to stand on their own will there be any progress. Of course, that isn't the progress a Progresssive seeks, but they too must grow up sometime.
~ Will

Z said...

WILL...what good information to have, thanks; based on experience...
"Only when people learn to stand on their own will there be any progress."
Excellent point.
It's the difference of giving people the fish and giving them the fishing pole and teaching them to fish.

~Leslie said...

You are approaching this topic with a very sensible argument, Z. And I will add, if we take care of our own country first, then it bares to reason we would be in better standing to help others. But our first thought should be our own country. What good is it to send out all charitable efforts with the result of failing our own country?

As far as criticism from the left -they have already proven that they have no decency, no reason, nor do they show signs of adequately making use of the gray cells...

cube said...

I'm all for helping those in REAL need and not the lazy good-for-nothings who feel entitled.

Z said...

Hi, Leslie.."But our first thought should be our own country."

You know that brands you a selfish American anti-Christian capitalist pig, don't you. :-)
America must never come first to those who don't love her and appreciate all she's given them.

Z said...

I meant my last sentence there as an affirmation of some beliefs, "must never"...not a suggestion!

Anonymous said...

I believe charity belongs at home, but I also think that the interests of charity is best served within communities, neighbors taking care of one another ... not big brother in Washington trying to manufacture a political resume by spending other people's money.

Pris said...

Charity does begin at home, and that includes my first priority, my own family.

Having said that, we contribute to four charities we trust to help those who need it.

But, if one of my children or grandchild, needed help, that child would come first. My children are loathe to ask for help, and if one did, it would mean that child is in dire straits.

So, yes, charity does begin at home, and right now, that is not an unusual position for many, in America.

Going to the govt. for help, to me, would be a last resort, not a first choice by any means.

For Mr. Pris and me, if things get tough, what I've always said to my family is, "we circle the wagons" and take care of our own, and they agree, regardless of who it is, or if it's all of us.

Gramma 2 Many said...

Even though I am involved in a work for a church friend in Tanzania, I know you have a very legitimate point here. We have so much need right here in the U.S. I do think though, that so many Americans have grown up "entitled" and see no need to better themselves.
I really think that if you have a heart to help, God will direct you to where He wants your help to go.

Z said...

Mustang, I agree; even to the point that communities should be able to decide on mosques in their neighborhoods. But, we've lost the community sense here...they're ghettos more than communities in big cities now, anyway.

I'm just thinking about that and realizing that America's biggest problem is we're not producing/ manufacturing...not creating jobs, pricing ourselves out of markets, destroying whole communities like when steal left Philadelphia, etc....I know we do export a lot, but not enough, and we don't manufacture enough stuff that WE BUY.
Now we have nothing but Big Box cheap cheap; little quality, little charm, etc..
it's all we can afford. And it's all Chinese.
a little off topic, but I think it fits?

Pris...Giving to charities is the American way, isn't it...supporting our families if they need us; trying to avoid going to the government as much as possible? Because we'd rather give privately is a source of ridicule and disdain from leftwingers, which is, frankly, a little sick and very unAmerican; but, they've won this fight, really. Their political correct nonsense shuts good people down.

I saw a piece last night on Stossel, where he interviewed people in a VERY upscale neighborhood in NYC where they were lined up for blocks to get free bike helmets......thousands of them! Whole families worth of helmets. He asked rich people in line why they didn't support the local bike shop which is selling these since they could afford it! A woman said "Well, it's free and we might as well TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THAT!" (HER EXACT WORDS!)....they don't even GET IT.

Z said...

Gramma, that's an excellent point about God directing our hearts.
I have given some to Armenia and other countries, mostly Africa, you're right; if we feel it in our heart, it's what we should do.
I just wish more Americans had it on their hearts to help our own.

Pris said...

We can still give, we just can't claim it on our taxes. That won't stop us. We can't give so much we could claim it anyway.

If we were rich, we wouldn't miss it, we'd still give. Tax deduction or not.

Z said...

Pris, is that already done?..that we can't write off charity anymore?
Just another nail in the coffin to charitable giving and avoiding the government for everything people need.

It's like they're squelching the human spirit of giving; gee, I thought that's a REPUBLICAN THING (Smile)

Lisa said...

Z that's the sneaky part of this admin. They use the term "Rich" quite loosely.

Z said...

Lisa, I'm beginning to think this admin. thinks we're "RICH" if we're not already on their dole.

Always On Watch said...

The inner-city ministry that I personally know about is finding that their words are not falling on deaf ears and hard hearts.

Z said...

AOW, that's wonderful to hear. I know people downtown here in L.A. who are doing great work, too; I try to support them from time to time with a little bit of money, too.
I wish I could do more, of course.

I'd like to see a bunch of inner city teens see others come to help THEM like we're helping elsewhere around the world; to teach them the feeling of helping themselves and their own friends and family, too. NOthing surpasses that sure beats holding your hand out for a freebie.

Pris said...

"Pris, is that already done?..that we can't write off charity anymore?"

Z, I don't know if it's been instituted yet. I only know it came to light some time ago. Probably in those new financial rules we haven't been privy to.

Evidently only Obama and his cronies can decide where and who
our money is distributed to.

Any President who calls tax cuts government "spending" as Obama did, is surely not willing to credit us with charitable giving!

To this administration, our money is not ours, it belongs to the government. But tell that to liberals who don't know squat about this President!

Anonymous said...

"to teach them the feeling of helping themselves and their own friends and family, too."

Don't hold your breath Ms. Z. Ain't going to happen, ever.

( Sometimes you sound like a progressive! LOL )

Once on the dole...always on the dole. The last 3 generations haven't proved that to you?

Their deal is to march in the streets demanding that someone "help" them.

It's never enough for them is it?

One would think that the Lee's, Waters, Jacksons and Sharptons would lead the charge, wouldn't you?

Not with child like "leaders".

Z said...

imp, it's progressive to think we should all care for ourselves?

I know amazing Black women who DO take very good care of themselves, their ailing parents, and their siblings' children...and their own sisters and brothers.
THey're smart, do not like Libs/Obama, and work hard and have succeeded.

I'm not giving up on that rubbing off on coming generations!

beamish said...

...but if we all helped ourselves, what would we need our government for? Are you trying to put honest civil servants out of work? How could they collect their overly generous pensions, then? You must hate America.

Nah. As long as far left dialectical materialist communists like Paul Ryan want to "save" Medicare by changing the name of the mandatory participation scheme, we should all become government employees. Don't mind sleeping in a chair instead of your bed? Become an air traffic controller! Don't think Mexican drug warlords have enough guns? Join the BATF! Want to do cocaine or spend all day trolling the internet? Go to work for NASA.

The best solution has been before us all along.

Anonymous said...

So, call me cynical.

I don't argue that you may know some of them that do contribute. The fact is they represent less than 1/10 of those who do not get involved.

Have things worsened of gotten better over the past 50 years? Is Obama, their savior, even remotely attached to their cause? Not while Wall Street is booming he doesn't.

"Here is the ultimate political irony of the Obama era and gentry liberalism: the metropolitan areas most passionately committed to the progressive agenda – which have adopted them on the state and local level – also tend to be those with the highest rates of inequality and the deepest poverty. Indeed, if cost of living is included, most of the urban counties with the highest percentage of poor people are located in the very bluest areas of New York, California or Washington, D.C., which together account for five of the nation’s ten poorest counties. As a state, California, once a prototype for democratic capitalism, now suffers the worst income inequality in the country." the "progressive" reality Z.

Also notice that these areas are the LEAST FREE in the country too?

Linda said...

I missed this post. I agree with you 100%. Our church men replaced a family's roof this year rather than send $ to another country.

Pris said...

"It's never enough for them is it?"

Hi Imp, I'm afraid you're right. Look at union members. They're not poor, yet it's never enough for them either. Their company or govt. could be falling apart, but still they strike and storm buildings.

As I told a grocery market worker once, instead of one master, his employer, he has two, his union.

He can work for another market, but he's stuck with his union, whom he obeys, whether it serves his best interests or not.

When the takers outnumber the givers, something has to go. We're almost there, so Katie bar the door, it's going to get ugly!

Dave Miller said...

As one of those folks who spends his life serving and helping in Mexico, I think most people would be hard pressed to biblically defend abandoning the missionary call found in the bible.

We certainly can choose to not go, not support, and not help those ministries outside our borders, but I would like to see the scriptural basis for doing do.

Z said...

Dave, my post only suggests that there are many, many, MANY people in America who need every bit as much help as Mexico or anywhere else.....not that we should completely abandon helping elsewhere. And please read the comments.
I feel very strongly about the fact that we need help HERE and that it's really okay to put America first.

There is nothing unscriptural about that, either.