Session 3 – Economic Ownership: The Rich, the Poor, and those In Between

©2017 Ginger Hertenstein

Community Conversation 3
Community in Unity
A conversation among leaders and citizens for the flourishing of Duncanville

Our goal: to engage in conversation about becoming a community in unity. Our diversity should enrich us as we listen and learn from each other’s perspective. We are not trying to solve problems! We are practicing the art of civil conversation.

Week Three: Economic Ownership – The Rich, the Poor, and those In Between
There are a plethora of opinions about how to achieve economic viability for all citizens, and the subject often creates tension among people. We took a step back from problem-solving opinions (not our goal!) to looking at economics and attitudes toward others from a different perspective. Four stories were told, which we discussed to see what they say about economics.

1.   A View of the Collection Plate
2.   Who Will Show the Rich Man True Riches?
3.   Elisha and the Widow Collaborate to Repay Debt
4.   The Door in the Wall

These stories were about the actions and decisions of the poor, the rich, and those who had experienced a life-changing crisis. The community matters, as these stories were not isolated events affecting one person, but rather took place among neighbors and friends. People operate in community. As we take these stories to heart, and receive the vision they cast, we are able to move from ME to WE.

Table Conversation
Following are some bullet points from our discussions:

  1.   True Riches, regardless of wealth, involves giving. Even the poor can contribute and it    will significantly help the community, as well as provide the giver with a sense of empowerment. Every little bit matters, even down to the penny and giving shows caring. It also pleases God, who can do magnificent things with what you give.
  2.   If you have plenty, do not be consumed with wealth because finding meaning is not all about the money. (story 2) More important values include having close friends, good health, and satisfied people. Such is achieved by being responsible to your community by helping them gain a sense of belonging.
  3.   Invest in others. After many others invested in Robin (story 4), he invested in others too, even to the point of a great sacrifice.
  4.   Sacrifice. The wealthy can be deceived about the power of wealth vs. the power of sacrifice and the extraordinary accomplishments that can be achieved by giving all. When you choose to keep all for yourself, you essentially choose not to belong to the “we.”
  5.   Humble yourself. The widow and her children (story 3) had to communicate, ask, and learn how to make a business out of her meager but valuable possession (the oil). But coupled with what the community gave her when she asked (the jars), she was able to payall her debt and had enough to spare to support herself and her children (and perhaps even start a new business!).
  6.   Be aware of the needs of others, then be willing to participate when asked. By doing that, you are intentionally moving from ME into WE.
  7.   Attitude matters. The right attitude can change you from a failure into a success story. This lesson is learned when you have the encouragement of others to push through the difficulties. Encouraging others shows you believe in them and support them.
  8.   Be courageous. When decisions come your way, make them, rather than coasting along without thinking. Remember, when a challenge faces you, ANYONE CAN NOT DO IT. Let that thought motivate you and change your focus to being a willing participant.
  9.   Every wall has a door. Even crutches (story 4) or crisis (story 3) or lack of money (story 1) or loss can be a door in the wall. Remember that. Now go open the door!

Working with others builds UNITY in Community. That only comes from a changed heart. Changed hearts come from God. Changed hearts change minds, and changed minds change actions. Actions change the community—and changed communities eventually the nation.

THIS THURSDAY – Chief Robert Brown, along with Officers Doug Sisk and Louis Chapman
share with us about building community with the police.

PLEASE COME AND SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL POLICE! 7:00 – 8:15! Snacks by Kasey Cheshier and Kitchen’s Deli!

Thank you for participating! Thanks to Kasey for the sound system, awesome tech support, and
refreshment!!

See you this Thursday, October 12th, 7:00 – 8:15 pm

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