I was trying to post something, but, apparently it didn't go through.
I remember Joseph from when he visited. Always asking question and moving to different churches, which is not a bad thing, but, not the best thing to begin trying to give people absolute advice about their finances. But, since he at least, seemed interested, I took him for sincere.
1. The cell phone tower example you posit is not at all how it 'went down', to use a phrase. To put a cell phone tower on the propery, it was necessary for Verizon to have the permission of our neighbors, since the road that comes up the mountain is 80% there, and thus, our land intersects. If the tower had been placed up here, it would have been financially 'good' and the road would have been paved (though, I honestly think, in retrospect, that no tower was a good idea, since I think there is some issue in reality to the em radiation of cell phones and cell phone tower and brain cancer, but, I digress). However, the neighbors protested, saying that such a tower would lower their property values, or be unsightly, or something to that effect. Thus, since the company needed their aquiesence in the matter, it would closed with the neighbors refusal.
2. Selling land here is not easy. As you may not know, but, I do, since I live here, and help handle the finances, the matter of our land is in dispute, that is, there is a boundary dispute with our neighbors. And, if you didn't know, hiring a land surveyor isn't cheap, and it isn't cheap in corrupt old NJ. How does a base bill of $5,000 dollars sound? Expensive isn't it. But, that's what the 'town says' needs to happen, with all their fees added. And, then, there is no gurantee the surveyor will come to any clear conclusions (don't you love these crony systems, "We needs an extral 2,000 dollars, yous knows, to makes sure everythings is fines!!"). And then guess what, we still have to pay the 10,000 dollar land tax we owe on the 20 acres even if the surveyor comes to a proper conclusion, at least the tax for that year. But, wait, we're out 5,000 dollars (if not more in 'fees' and other 'costs') with the surveyor and the town; then we can't pay the land tax. You know what happens then? The land automatically goes on auction, and they don't notify you when it happens (or, atleast, if they do, they don't actually do it). That's actually happened once before, with a similar situation.
And to add on to all this, it has become almost near impossible (or very difficult) to sell land in NJ in certain areas (especially like ours, with all the forests and lakes near us), due to the misguided passage of the "Highlands Act" by the General Assembly of the State of NJ.
I view all this as a scam perpetuated by the generally corrupt state and the cronies that run it and their friends (and anyone who has had to deal with the towns around here knows about corruption).
And I think Iconodule brought up an excellent point, maybe there is something else you didn't see (and of course, I pointed out 2 issues above that you completely failed to understand, or forgot, or whatever).
And for people who don't live with constantly having to wonder where and how they are going to deal with all these situations, and then having to deal with medical bills and other bills, and having to administer people spiritually, and all the rest, I'm sure to those people it seems like it should be smooth sailing! That is, until you run into reality about how finances work, and how people act, and then you find out that the best laid plans go awry and maybe God is telling you that you should be poor and suffer so you can then have at least a little sympathy and compassion without criticism of the struggles of others.
Like I was saying on another list somewhere, as bad as any of us may have, there are people who are far worse; poor in America is rich in Africa,etc., or something to that effect.