Thursday, September 2, 2010

Keeping Things in Perspective

So often I find myself worrying about things that are of little significance when you consider the world's problems. Just yesterday I was reminded of this very thing when my daughter in law wrote that they couldn't leave the house because of rioting in the streets of Maputo/Matola Mozambique, where they serve as missionaries. My son was going to take his bike out for his daily exercise when a neighbor saw him and warned him, advising him that it would not be safe to go out.

The riots were provoked by rising costs of bread and other basics. The GDP of Mozambique is around $800 verses neighboring South Africa which enjoys nearly $10,000 GDP--a huge difference. They depend on South Africa for goods, and must compete against the South African rand, and their currency the metical is losing value. Seventy percent of all Mozambicans live below the poverty line. The country's infrastructure is sorely lacking, and basic necessities such as medical care are scarce. I read the other day that millions of dollars worth of malaria medicines are donated to poor African countries such as Mozambique, but it never really reaches the needy as it is often sold on the private market. Corruption is rampant and nothing seems to work as one would expect in a more "civil" and developed nation.

When I visited Nathan and Emily back in May, I was so thankful upon returning to the Canary Islands of Spain, where civility and tranquility are the norm. Sure, we have our problems with a 25 percent unemployment rate, but at least they try to do things decently and in order. The poorest of people here have adequate health care, a place to live, and food to eat.

Next time you are tempted to complain, or worry, try to think about how the rest of the world is living, and thank God for all our abundant blessings. My heart aches for the people suffering in these poor countries.

1 comment:

Ted Snyder said...

Very well said! The same though came to mind when i read about Nathan and Emily!