You know the story, Peter and John meet this crippled guy asking for money at the Temple gate. They say to him, "Silver and gold have I none but such as I have I give to you, in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk."
There is a real problem in helping folks. Many Christians want to help but don't know how. Somebody asks for money but you're afraid they're gonna use the money for the wrong things and if they do, you haven't helped. So, over time we just don't do anything 'cause we don't know what to do.
Peter and John solved the problem without using money. They got the guy back on his feet! By getting him on his feet he didn't need to beg anymore because he could work. There is a great lesson in helping people in this passage and it is the core value of our FAITH housing ministry (link). Get people back on their feet.
Family after family come to us asking for silver and gold. What we do instead (in the name of Jesus) is get them back on their feet. And yes, that does take silver and gold and checks and money orders. But by helping people get back on their feet, we take them out of begging for silver and gold all the time to where they can stand on their own, now not needing the financial assistance.
When someone comes to you asking for money, ask God to help you to see how to get them back on their feet. In the last two years we have helped over 25 families who came to us having just lost their jobs and homes, many deep in debt with fines and past bills, having lost much including hope. They thought that the quick relief of the most pressing bill at the time was the answer. Instead, over time (usually not as long as they think), we get their feet back underneath them.
Once stabilized, they pay their own bills, with their heads held high not their hands held out. And they address some core issues, mostly spiritual, that really do put them on the Solid Ground who is our Lord Jesus. Friends, our Lord stands ready to strengthen the weak. Many times we leave them weak by giving them something that Bandaids a problem rather than solves it.
Christian, you CAN help. Get 'em back on their feet.