What ‘Occupy Wall Street’ Taught Me
I do not like to talk politics, and luckily, I wont in this post either. However, I do want to comment on the recent phenomena that is the Occupy Wall Street movement. In the grand scheme of things I think this movement will be relatively minor but, it is useful to highlight one important attitude that every person should have… gratitude.
The mantra of the Occupy Wall Street movement is, “We are the 99%”. The only problem is we, the middle class and the poor in America, are not the 99%. In fact, the “99%” in America are more wealthy than the majority of the world. Here is some information that you need to be aware of:
Recent World Bank data estimates the number of people living on under $1.25 a day at about 1.4 billion worldwide. 8 About half of Sub-Saharan Africans live on under $1.25 a day. 9 Many more live just above this line. Over 2.5 billion people live on less than $2 a day, with nearly three-quarters of the population of Sub-Saharan Africa falling into this category. 10 (Note: These figures are calculated for purchasing power parity (PPP), meaning that someone earning “$2 a day” does not literally earn this much but the equivalent of what 2 U.S. dollars could buy in the United States.11) –GiveWell.org
Over 3.9 billion people live on less than 2$ a day. That is a staggering statistic that makes the people occupying Wall Street look like the Monopoly man. When we lose perspective we lose reality and, in reality, the people on Wall Street have lost perspective. Many of the Occupy people have cell phones, computers, jobs, and places to sleep. How many in the world have half of those things? How many have all of them? Not a majority. This loss of worldwide perspective also leads to a lack of gratitude.
Gratitude and thankfulness is an essential component of living a healthy Christian life. Without it, we are truly lost. This is what the Bible says about gratitude and thankfulness:
Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever! -Psalm 107:1, ESV
And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. -Colossians 3:15
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. -1 Thessalonians 5:18
What the Occupy Wall Street movement has taught me is to never lose perspective, never lose a sense of reality, never stray from God’s Word, and never lose gratitude.
Thanks for reading.