As I reflected on this video (insert link) and Matthew 25:31-46, I came to realize that in order to truly help the poor would require us to see the image of the divine in them. That view point doesn’t mean giving materials to them, but more about giving confidence to cope with their struggles in life.
Veronica’s story shows that it is more than giving the homeless the resources. It is about giving people the confidence to create solutions. Veronica wanted to design a coat that transforms into a sleeping bag for a school project, but ended up doing much more than that. She gave people using homeless shelters one thing they needed most. Some might say, this girl is the real life example of a proverb: “Give man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” Veronica in this story provided skills to people who are homeless so that they can become independent. The challenge isn’t so much giving knowledge or resources but a confidence that a human can, with the right support, create a better solution.
This story also reminds me about my wife's advocacy for her students with disabilities. She develops a relationship with her students and teaches them how to ask for resources and how to seek for them in the system. These skills help the students achieve their goals. In doing that, she helps them to build confidence in themselves.
If we take seriously the story of Matthew 25:31-46, we are here to help the poor and needy. First, we first interact with the person of poverty to see the divine. Second, we work with the person to determine the talents and the struggles the person of poverty may have. Third, we help them discern the resources that will help them overcome their struggles. Last, in time, we help them to build confidence in themselves with the help of God in them, Emmanuel