Most of the time when I read stats about the condition of our world, the numbers are so incomprehensibly large that my eyes merely glaze over. These stats, however, convicted me:
The truth is that the 143 million orphaned children, and the 11 million who starve to death or die from preventable diseases, and the 8.5 million who work as child slaves, prostitutes, or under other horrific conditions, and the 2.3 million who live with HIV add up to 164.8 million needy children. And though at first glance that looks like a big number, 2.1 billion people on this earth proclaim to be Christians.
The truth is that if only 8 percent of the Christians would care for one more child, there would not be any statistics left.
~Katie Davis, Kisses from Katie (2011, p. 91-92)
Only 8 percent. Eight percent!! Suddenly, that is a number I can understand. That is a number that even seems possible.
Here in the U.S. we’ve heard a lot in the past year about the wealthiest 1% versus the 99% of “ordinary Americans”. Protestors rally carrying signs that proclaim “We are the 99.” I’d like to propose a new question. Not, are we part of the 99, but are we part of the 92?
Or are we part of that 8% that is following Jesus’ command to love our neighbor as ourselves?
When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?” “Yes, Lord,” he said, “you know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.” Again Jesus said, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” He answered, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Take care of my sheep.” The third time he said to him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, “Do you love me?” He said, “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. (John 21:15-17)