The world is a village. That’s what my local church has been talking about. We shared these statistics of what the population would look like if we were a village of just 100 people.
Out of 100 people
• 60 would be Asian
• 14 would be African
• 12 would be European
• 8 would be Latin American
• 5 would be American or Canadian
• 1 would be from the South Pacific
• 51 would be male; 49 would be female
• 82 would be non-white; 18 white
• 67 would be non-Christian; 33 would be Christian
I don’t find these stats alarming, but I do find them surprising. I think, if we’re honest, we all do. The fact is we can all get so narrow-focused in our own little part of the world that we forget the rest of the world may not look like us. Guess what? They also don’t always think or respond like us either.
But there is one stat this chart leaves off, no matter which version I look at. For every village, there is at least one idiot. Who knows, it could be me. But regardless of whether we admit it or not, this is often how we view those people in the village who do not think as highly of us as we tend to think of us.
In some of Jesus’ stories we come across a person who perhaps did not stand still while they were pouring in mental power. Or as my dad used to describe me, ‘when they were passing out brains, I thought they said ‘trains’ and figured I was going somewhere. Thanks, dad.One of the parables of Jesus reveals a man who thought that burying his coin was a better idea than investing it with the bank. Another story shows us a son eating pig slop while his father had a daily feast. We can read of rich men storing treasures, bridesmaids not bringing enough oil for their lamps and builders choosing a beach for their home.
Dim bulbs? Perhaps, but who am I to judge? Yes, Jesus was often painting a picture of foolish thinking in connection with how we should think of God and His kingdom. But none of us are perfect. Since all of us have a little plank-pulling left to do (see Matthew 7:1-5), maybe now is the time to enjoy our differences instead of categorizing them.
The world is a village. To put it differently, we are a family. Each one of us is a son or daughter of God. I believe it’s time we started treating one another as such.