Monday, September 29, 2008

American Wealth and the Rest of the World

Lori and I are currently going through the membership class at our church and this week the class looked at the topic of biblical giving. Each member was given a copy of The Treasure Principle (by one of my favorite authors, Randy Alcorn) and watched portions of a message on giving by Bob Coy, pastor of Calvary Chapel of Fort Lauderdale. Pastor Coy's talk contained some pretty interesting facts about the world we live in and how Americans compare to others.

He stated that if we were to break down the population of the world into only 100 people, it would play out like this:
  • There would be 51 women and 49 men.
  • 70 people would be of a faith other than Christianity.
  • There would be 70 people of color; 30 would be white.
  • 80 would live in substandard housing (i.e. no running water or electricity, etc.)
  • 50 would be malnourished, living off of perhaps one small meal a day.
  • 70 would be illiterate and unable to read.
  • And 6 of the the 100 would possess half of all the world's wealth and reside in the United States of America.
Even with the financial challenges that Americans face today, it doesn't seem as bad when you consider the following:
  • There are approximately 6.6 billion people in the world today and close to half of that (well over 3 billion) live on less than $2 a day!
  • There are over 300 million living in the U.S. (less than 6% of the world's population), yet Americans have half the world's wealth.
To personalize this, why don't you take a stroll on over to Global Rich List and see where you rank on the list of the world's wealthiest people? I know that my wife and I are feeling the strain of the present economic crisis, but understanding that I have more financial wealth than over 97% of the world's population puts things in perspective. It's at least something to think about.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for this. Very moving and insightful. How can we be so blessed and still be so unsatisfied?

Maurice Peugh said...

How is America considered rich when the country owes over a trillion dollars?

I have many questions of a religious nature too and have set up a blog myself if anyone wants to take a shot at answering them.

Have a great day!