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Posts in “Theology of Poverty Alleviation”

Illustration of a man playing with his child

What is Normal?

Many of the certainties of our daily lives have been upended. We all just want to get back to normal! But what is “normal”? What are we eager to get back to?

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Our hope is in the resurrection

The Easter Epidemic

It’s Easter weekend—the pinnacle of the Christian calendar. It’s supposed to be a weekend full of joy and celebration. How are we to experience joy and celebrate in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis?

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Interview with Brian Fikkert: Redefining Success for Poverty Alleviation

Redefining “Success” for Poverty Alleviation

What’s the best way to help people who are poor? We can talk about techniques, but the truth is we need more than that. To really help people, we have to take a look at the stories that we tell ourselves about what success really looks like—both for you and the people you are trying to help.

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First Step in Poverty Alleviation

The First Step in Poverty Alleviation

When we see material poverty in the world around us, our first instinct is to do something about it. Where should we start? What’s the first step in poverty alleviation?

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Kelly Kapic

Practicing What We Teach

When we try to help people who are materially poor, we often focus on the habits we think they need to change. But what about our own habits? How do our daily practices affect our ministry with the materially poor?

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Light streaming through windows in a ruined building

Broken Systems, Broken People

Is poverty due to individual brokenness? Or is it caused by systemic injustice? The Bible teaches that the Fall really happened—and it affects both individuals and systems!

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Kelly M. Kapic

Start with the Story

When you’re doing ministry, it can feel like telling stories doesn’t count as “real” work. But telling the biblical story—focusing on what God has done, is doing, and will do—is crucial to poverty alleviation.

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Busy inner-city intersection

Addressing the Five Causes of Poverty

There are five big things that create material poverty and keep people trapped in it. Learn the five causes of poverty—and how you can begin to address them.

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Group of people listening to a lecture

Living into the Story

God is working out His reconciling story in this broken world. The Bible doesn’t provide us with a detailed script for this story—but it does give us the overall direction of God’s unfolding plan. What does this mean for our efforts to help people who are poor?

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Someone writing a check

God’s Battle for Your Bank Account

The tomatoes caught me off guard. Sitting in a small Anglican church in Kenya, I was prepared for the invitation to put some money in the offering plate. I was not prepared for tomatoes. But that’s what the members of that farming village brought. Tomatoes, avocadoes, maybe even a chicken or two, all brought up…

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Woman sitting and reading in a church

Why Bother with the Local Church?

Your local church is a place where God dwells with His people in a special way. Is your church welcoming people who are poor back into the dwelling place of God?

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Woman working in a restaurant

God’s Kingdom Has a Startling Economic System

Every earthly kingdom has its own way of doing things, its own customs and policies regarding food, sex, family, and religion. And every kingdom has an economic policy. But when Jesus welcomes us into his alternate kingdom, something strange happens. We discover a whole new world. And we soon discover that Jesus’s kingdom looks different…

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Someone flipping through the pages of a book

Getting Our Story Straight

When we try to help people in poverty, we incorporate faulty ideas into our efforts without even realizing it. What are these false stories—and why do they matter?

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Congregation worshipping in a church

We Become What We Worship: Why False Stories Hurt Us—And the Poor

Every human is worshiping something—and what we worship shapes our entire lives, including our work with people in poverty. When people encounter our poverty alleviation efforts, what will they find us worshiping?

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Wendell Kimbrough

A Gymnasium for Our Hearts: Singing to Shape Our Love for the Poor

The gathered worship and liturgy of the church is key to our formation as the people of God, but too often, an element is missing. Musician Wendell Kimbrough shares how our worship services can reinforce our understanding of God’s heart for people suffering poverty and injustice.

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Woman looking out over a city

We Need a Better Story

We often build poverty alleviation initiatives that are designed to help poor people pursue the American Dream. But what if all of us—poor and non-poor alike—need a different story?

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Man reading Becoming Whole

Interview: Brian Fikkert on Becoming Whole

Brian Fikkert recently sat down with staff member Laura Haley to discuss the new book he co-authored with Kelly Kapic, Becoming Whole—and how the stories we tell ourselves shape our work with the poor.

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Woman serving a homeless person soup

Why the Kingdom of God Matters if We Want to Help the Poor

The way that we work with people who are poor reflects the stories we tell ourselves about what it means to live the “good life.” If we get the story wrong, our efforts to help the poor can do more harm than good.

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