This post contains some very challenging thoughts for me. It is a copy of today's "gracEmail" by Edward Fudge.
GRATITUDE AND RESPONSIBILITY (by Edward Fudge)
Imagine that the approximately 6.5 billion men, women and children in the world today were shrunk into a village containing 100 people with all present human ratios remaining as they are now. Forty-six people in this prototype human village would enjoy political freedom, 17 would be partially free and 37 would be denied most basic human rights.
Geographically, this village of 100 people would include 57 Asians, 21 Europeans, 14 people from the Americas (North, Central and South) and 8 Africans. Seventy of the 100 villagers would be non-white. Religiously, 66 people would be non-Christian (22 Muslims, 15 Hindus, 14 non-religious, 6 Buddhists, 9 other) and 34 would profess Christianity (18 Roman Catholics, 7 Protestants, 4 Orthodox and 5 other).
In terms of formal education, only one person in this village would have a college education. In the cycle of life, one villager would be near birth and one would be near death. From an economic standpoint, six villagers would possess half the wealth of the total village, all six of them from the United States. Meanwhile, 80 villagers would live in substandard housing, 70 would not be able to read and 50 would suffer from malnutrition.
All of us reading this have much for which to be thankful and also much for which to be accountable as stewards of God's bounty. What would happen if all professing Christians took seriously Jesus' teaching about the proper use of money? What could happen if wealthy countries (and wealthy rulers of poor countries) set a priority on supplying basic human needs to all human beings? Imagine a world in which national goals, individual greatness and personal success were measured by good done for others. How do these thoughts make us feel? Why?
Copyright 2007 by Edward Fudge. Permission hereby granted to reprint this gracEmail without change, with credit given and not for financial profit. http://www.edwardfudge.com/