As most of you know, James Hinkle and his son Jim are continuing their work in Lusaka, Zambia as you read this article. Let me share with you some comparisons about what life is like for the average Zambian.
If you were a Zambian, you would be 25 times more likely to have HIV than an average American. You would have 97% less money to your name—but you would have 3 times more babies to support in your family. The chances of you being unemployed are five times higher than they are here—even in these weird economic times. The unemployment rate has been hovering around 50% for the last several years. Of course, you might not live long enough to work if you were an average Zambian. Their children are 16 times more likely to die in infancy—and the average life expectancy is 38—forty years shorter than here in the States. I’d be well past my mid-life crisis there!
Consider this: I have just described average life in Zambia. There have been no earthquakes, tsunamis, or nuclear disasters there. They are not on the cusp of war. This is what life looks like when things are going well. Imagine the poverty if a disaster were to strike.
It is incredible to hear about the work being done in places like this. We received word via email from Jim that the work there is going well. People at the Mapepe Bible College are hungry to learn and grow. There are currently 66 students enrolled. In addition to their daily Bible studies, they are being taught agricultural techniques to help them support themselves. If you want to find out more about their work, you can visit http://zambiamissions.com to read newsletters, see videos, and look at pictures.
Can I encourage you to count your blessings today? We have it good—really good. Let’s thank God for his continued blessings and providential care. Let’s pray for those whose lives are made difficult by poverty of their surroundings. Let’s act to help those in need.