Wednesday, November 14, 2012

"Now I Can See Out of Both Eyes"

Sometimes at Bethel / BSSM there are opportunities for testimonies of what God is doing among those of us in the school. Yesterday, a young woman said that she recently came across a homeless man here in Redding. She had some food in the car, so she brought it out and shared it with him. 

In the course of conversation he said that he had a terrible childhood, and had been burned by religion. She asked if he would like to meet the real Jesus.

He said that he would like to know what that felt like. He closed his eyes and held out his hands for prayer. The woman prayed with him. When he opened his eyes, they suddenly went wide in surprise.

She asked why he was so surprised. 

"I have a blind eye," he said, "but now I can see out of both eyes."

Friday, November 02, 2012

U.S.A. > Wrong Direction?

A 142-country 2012 Legatum Institute report investigating prosperity around the world suggests what most Americans already are saying: the country is heading in the wrong direction.

Prosperity Index by Country
2012 Prosperity Index showing rankings for the United States.
This nation dropped out of the top 10 to 12th place in 2012.
The Index looks at eight indicators of prosperity rather than just economic wealth. The 2012 index shows that for the first time, the USA has dropped out of the top 10 to 12th place.

According to the methodology used by Legatum, the US has slipped from 2010 to 2012 as follows:

  • Economy: From 14th place to 20th place
  • Entrepreneurship & Opportunity: 3rd place to 12th place
  • Governance: 3rd to 10th
  • Education: 9th to 5th (improvement)
  • Health: 1st to 2nd
  • Safety & Security: 25th to 27th
  • Personal Freedom: 25th to 27th
  • Social Capital: 12th to 10th (improvement)

Certainly no index of this kind is free of bias, and methodologies vary.  Nevertheless, it is yet another suggestion that our national approach to providing prosperity for our people is working less and less well.

Government is not the only way to make changes in national direction, but it is hugely important.  With national elections only days away at this writing, these matters are worth serious thought before marking our ballots.