Enabling vs. Empowering: Is Compassion Old School?

By | Apr 21, 2014

lost keysI sometimes think our interpretation of the story of the Good Samaritan in the Bible hinders our efforts to end homelessness.

This is the story of a guy—a Samaritan—who comes across a seriously injured man from an enemy tribe lying by the road, nearly dead. Instead of leaving him there to die, the Samaritan takes him in and nurses him back to health.

His compassion has been a role model for millions of people ever since. Compassionate people around the world go to their hurting neighbors, including our neighbors living on the streets, to provide food and clothing.

Isn’t that what we are supposed to do? When we see a hungry person, should we not feed him? Of course we should. That is the Good Samaritan’s response to a world filled with hurting people.

But if we are still feeding the same hungry person years later, there is a problem. Our compassion has created dependency. Instead of empowering a person, we become enablers. Read More »

Is “Working Poor” an Oxymoron?

By | Apr 1, 2014 | Comments Off

It just doesn’t make sense to be “working poor.” To put it simply: if you are working 30 hours per week, you should earn enough to be able to support your family.

By | Mar 25, 2014
When I think of children living on the streets, images of bedraggled street kids looking like Oliver Twist come to mind.
By | Mar 18, 2014
I used to sit in my third grade class during math sessions, daydreaming about playing basketball on the playground or going to the beach.
By | Mar 11, 2014
We are a country that embraces its “rights.
By | Mar 3, 2014
For years, officials have dubbed Los Angeles the “homeless capital” of America.
By | Feb 25, 2014
When I was young, growing up in my hometown in Southern California, there was an urban legend that circulated throughout our neighborhood and across the school playground.
By | Feb 18, 2014
How many times will this country disrespect its most vulnerable, hurting people? Those who are homeless have endured people screaming at them from their luxury cars: “Get a job, you bum!” Other people living on the streets have been set on fire or beaten with baseball bats.
By | Feb 11, 2014
We are a land where it never rains.