Nancy brought up an exquisitely interesting point the other day. The Bible does not appear to say anything about enabling. One could make an argument, of course, that enabling is unhealthy and hence we should obviously steer clear of it. But I wonder if things are at all that simple.
Is the wisdom that says we should withhold from those who lean on us because giving to their detriment an earthly wisdom or a heavenly one? Might it be that we conjure up this notion of enabling as an excuse for ourselves so we can determine who is "really" in need and whom we can in good conscience ignore?
Labeling a particular charitable act as "enabling" essentially calls on us to become judge over whether someone "deserves" our help. But isn't that completely against most of Christian theology? Sure, you could claim that giving in certain cases is not really doing anyone any favors, but that seems to be a dangerous conclusion to draw (especially given how easy and attractive of a conclusion it is).
I once heard a talk at a Navs retreat by a large black man who talked about giving money away to people who might use it to buy alcohol, etc. He said "that is between him (the person receiving the money) and God." I think that viewpoint has much to commend it. I personally also believe that people are rather loathe to really ask for help in the first place...and someone generally has to be in a pretty bad way before finding the humility to ask for help.
Anyone have any scripture references on this?