I have seen significant press over the past few months about churches, charities, hotels, and other groups telling Hurricane Katrina evacuees to start taking care of themselves instead of living off public and private assistance. When the government finally stopped giving a free ride to evacuees, there was outcry that the government was being hard hearted and irresponsible. I guess the thought of self sufficiency never really crossed the minds of the recipients of FREE assistance.
I am all for helping those in need. Just look below a few entries and you will visually see it. I also believe that those who get assistance need to do for themselves the things that are necessary to support themselves and their families.
Many people have the entitlement mentality. I have been dealing with that a lot lately in the form of various individuals. It really burns me monetarily sometimes. I also burns me emotionally, as well. It tinders a spark of pontificating to those who believe that they deserve a hand out about taking care of themselves instead of wanting to suckle off a teat provided by a government, other people, or a church organization.
One case in particular has gotten bad press several times. A woman has been living in a house provided by a church congregation outside of Chicago for over a year. The church is finally asking her to leave. The press has tried to portray the church as evil in asking her to finally take care of herself and her children. Apparently, she is married and the father is working offshore. She has a source of income but has been living off the church for a year. She has three children but has not taken the necessary steps to ensure that their needs are met.
It is NOT "un-Christian" to expect that able bodied men and women fend for themselves. Many people need a "hand up", even a "hand out". There comes a time, however, when generosity's limit is reached and it becomes someone taking advantage of those who would be generous. I have experienced this personally and recently with more than one individual.
It would be "un-Christian" to continue to allow someone to remain a charity case and a parasite to society. I could copy and paste a bunch of Bible verses to back my point here, but don't want to lose the reader. I was accused by a former roommate of mine for being "un-Christian" for asking him to remove himself from my apartment. I had to do that three times when I had roommates, all total. Allowing someone to stay behind on rent to the detriment of the others is wrong, as is enabling someone to drink and do drugs, contrary to the agreement about living there.
Not everyone wants to be able to live life for themselves. Some want others to live for them and provide for them. We are not owed a living, nor are we required to provide it for others. Love has no limits, but it does know boundaries.