By Maggie Thornton
Jesus made it clear to his disciples that “to whom much is given, much is required” (Luke 12:48). This commandment haunts me when I think about all the material goods with which I have been blessed. Sometimes I wonder if to be a “real” Christian I should just sell everything, give the money to the poor, and live in a box or convent.
I know that living such a life would actually deprive me of the opportunity to work toward the sort of justice the prophet Micah tells us God wants us to love (Micah 6:8). My work as a Democratic volunteer, however, has given me a way to participate in a process that works toward achieving a little bit of God’s Kingdom here on earth.
Like many of you, I have been appalled at the way that some in this country have attacked programs for the impoverished. Alabama Republican Jeff Sessions went so far as to call food stamps immoral. Instead, I see food stamps as a way to acknowledge Christ’s admonition that the poor will always be with us. No child should go hungry in a country full of those to whom much has been given. Programs like the SNAP help needy families – most with children – fill a gap in funding as a parent looks for a job or overcomes an illness.
When I read Scripture, I see a Savior focused on helping the needy, speaking truth to power, and welcoming those whom society has deemed unacceptable. When I go to vote, I see a party that holds those same values. I am proud to be a Christian invested in following God’s commandments to love the poor. I’m glad that I have found a party that shares that commitment to alleviating poverty and including others.