I recently returned from Guyana for a cross-cultural experience. There are plenty of challenges in Guyana—no potable water, their city infrastructure is tenuous and poverty is everywhere.
My American eyes saw tragedy all around me, hardly a place I would expect hope and faith to flourish. The people of Guyana surprised me and taught me about how valuable ministry can and does happen. I saw the difference between a theology of scarcity and a theology of abundance.
Walter Brueggeman, an Old Testament scholar, writes that a theology of scarcity says there’s not enough food, water, housing, etc., so hold onto what you have, hoarding it if you must. A theology of abundance says you always have “enough” so it’s easy to give some of it away.
The people in Guyana transformed my expectations of what can be accomplished with few resources. Their determination was not defined by their limited circumstances. They are an inspiration.