Living under the U.S. Poverty line or threshold has been an interesting experience. I understand how strange a statement that is, however, I must admit that experiencing this is something that is not only new, but very educational. No matter how physically difficult this life is, the spiritual growth and maturity, the change of perspective, and the connection to the Father that is ever-growing makes finding joy possible.

Financial stress is something that is always an issue in these situations. The restrictions of poverty are almost causes in themselves for unemployment and an inability to move up. Being in this place makes you feel stuck, like there is no way out. It seems like when things look like you are going to get ahead, or even caught up, something else hits that puts you back further behind. Being under the line is a place where people get lost and wander around in the dark without hope. Being under the line is a scary and cold place to be.

I am so grateful to God for bringing me here. I believed at one point that I had compassion and love for those in poverty, and it wasn’t until the Lord allowed me to move into the neighborhood and live not only among the impoverished but as one who is impoverished that I truly began to see how little love and compassion I had for us impoverished people. My love for people has been able to take a real Christ perspective. Jesus walked among us, He became not only human but a poor human. He ate with sinners and prostitutes, touched the unclean, gave sight to the blind, and made men walk. He lived among us, and knows what it is like to hurt and hunger. I am grateful to my Lord for allowing me to be where I am, so that I can learn to trust in Him and give testimony to His provisions and love.

Though there is sometimes pain and anger, depression and anxiety; I am in a place where all of that seems to fade away, where pain becomes obsolete, and joy becomes reachable. I find myself in a place where even the lowest of incomes, the strongest of hunger pains, and the oldest of clothes cannot and will not be able to take away my hope. I live in a place full of light. I live, in Christ.