How can you help the poor when you can barely pay your own bills?
Pastor Kevin Wiebe grew up below the poverty line, with his mother hunting for change in the couch to buy food for the baby. Wiebe now pastors a “low-resource” church of mostly immigrants—a congregation that transcends definitions of the helper and the helped and that doesn’t fit neatly into any stereotype of poverty. In Faithful in Small Things, Wiebe shows readers that writing big checks isn’t the only—or even the best—way to alleviate poverty. Along the way, he shines a spotlight on the value of small acts of love as a means of changing the world, and as vitally important to following Jesus.
Investigating scriptural definitions of poverty and God’s heart for the poor throughout the Bible, Wiebe calls readers not only to “help the needy” but to acknowledge their own need and to work with God to serve others. By delving into concepts like brokenness, mutuality, dignity, and systemic injustice, Wiebe exposes gaps in the mainstream Christian understandings of economic inequality and explores holistic ways of reducing poverty. In doing so, he provides a better way forward for Christians committed to working for the flourishing of all. Jesus ministered to the poor, Jesus was poor. If both are true of our Savior, both can be true of us too.
Part 1: Christian Foundations for Beliefs About Poverty—The Bible Chapter 1: The Poverty in Us All Chapter 2: The Murdered Homeless Man Chapter 3: The Revelation of Your Hidden Beliefs Chapter 4: Broken
Part 2: How to Think About It Chapter 5: They Have Faces and Names Chapter 6: The Good News Chapter 7: Get Off Your High Horse Chapter 8: Learning to Receive Chapter 9: Mental Illness, Addictions, and Self-Care
Part 3: How to Live It Out Chapter 10: The Value of Relationships Chapter 11: Holistic and Sacrificial Giving Chapter 12: Turn Off the Tap Chapter 13: Choice and Consequences
Part 4: What Might Happen Chapter 14: When We Harm Chapter 15: Falling Forward Chapter 16: When Small Acts Grow Big Chapter 17: When Small Acts Stay Small
Conclusion A Note to Rural Readers Acknowledgements The Author