good news for the poor

One thing I have learned here is that it's not true that people can't face spiritual struggles until they have their more immediate needs met. Often it's precisely during the deepest experiences of physical need and suffering that people begin to open up spiritually.

As I wrote yesterday, this is one of the basic understandings in the 12-step programs. So the approach is precisely for those who are most desperate. I like that. And I see how important that is, because it asks people not just to turn to God for help, but to let God change them, to admit their faults and let themselves be reshaped according to God's will for them. Though we all need this, we usually have to be pretty desperate to go along with it.

And so this is an approach for the neediest, for the weakest, for the poorest. Maybe the best presentation of "good news to the poor" that I've seen. And it's presented in practical steps. And also in the context of community. All of which looks really good to me.