Finding Significance Behind Numbers
I don't know how you've processed the statistics above. On the one hand, these numbers provide us invaluable understanding of the dimension of the problem and aid us in prioritizing our resources and efforts. On the other hand, these numbers can also be numbing and debilitating. Knowing that there are 153 million orphans in the world can obscure the humanity, the dignity, and the worth of each of those children.
Richard Stearns, author of The Hole in Our Gospel, argues that statistics strips "their names and their stories, homogenizes their personalities, and cheapens the value of each individual child, creating in the very image of God. Statistics can become just another way to look away from the faces of the poor, just one more way to walk by on the other side of the road."
So how do we find significance and meaning behind the numbers? How do you start doing something about the numbers?
The answer is to focus on ONE PERSON. For some, this may mean sponsoring ONE CHILD (as little as $1/day). For others, it may mean praying for ONE CHILD by name to be adopted (see link below for a photo list of children waiting to be adopted in China). For yet others, it may mean bringing ONE CHILD into your family. Whatever you do, focusing on ONE CHILD makes it manageable.
In our case, Abby is the ONE CHILD that matters to us. She's not just a number or a statistic. She's ONE among the 153 million orphans in the world that has a home, a family, and a church that loves her and can't wait to hold her. She will be ONE CHILD whose life and life-chances will be forever changed.
Who is your ONE CHILD?