5 Poor Excuses We Make for Not Helping the Poor


My Christmases were radically changed five years ago. I had gotten into a vicious fight with my wife Ces on Christmas Day and ended up driving out to calm down. I ended up in the park which was—much to my unawareness—filled with homeless people. In the rage and unselfishness that overtook me, I felt stirred by the Spirit to give. I ordered a few pizzas and fed as many as five families with the little I had in my pocket.

God calls us to help the poor for one very simple reason: Because He has enabled us to do so. Acts 20:35 says, "In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"

But sometimes in our own broken nature, we can come up with various excuses to not give. The following list I only know because they've come out of my heart before as well. Here are five poor excuses to not make the effort of helping the poor.

1. I Don't Have Anything to Give

The most common excuse would probably be to say that we don't have anything to give, but that's not true. We all have the capacity to give something. Just the fact that you have a gadget and Wifi connection to read this post proves that. The little that you can give, God can use for great purposes.

2. I Don't Know How

When people say that they don't know how to give, it's sometimes because we don't make the effort to become aware of the situations of others. A few years back, a big fire hit a community close to ours. It only took me 30 minutes to walk around that place and know what the fire victims needed. Within a week I was able to start a fund-raising drive to provide assistance to those people.

3. Giving Them Will Not Help Them in Any Way

I'm a believer in the idea of "teaching a man to fish," but it's no excuse to not give a man a fish, too. Like a wise mentor once commented on the old proverb "Why choose to do one when you can do both?"

4. They Probably Deserve It

To say that people deserve poverty is an understatement. Romans 6:23 reminds us that we all deserve death and hell. Sure some people might deserve the predicaments they are in and so much more, but so do we. But God in His rich mercy spared us from it for the reason that we would be extensions of His grace to others.

5. It's My Hard-Earned Money

I love it when David said, "But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you." (1 Chronicles 29:14)

That's the heart that I want, and I hope that we should all have instead of feeling entitled to our money and blessings.