“Much food is in the fallow ground of the poor, and for lack of justice there is waste” (Proverbs 13:23).
The Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) is a statistical index of poverty regarding people’s situation according to country, put together by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP). The MP] uses ten parameters divided into three sections: education (years of schooling [if there’s access to it, if no members of the family have completed five years of schooling]; children’s schooling [if school aged children don’t attend school]); health (child mortality, nutrition); and quality of life (if the home has electricity, a bathroom in working condition or if shared and if there’s drinking water, as well as the floor’s condition [sand, dirt], if wood, coal or dung is used to cook and, finally, possessions [radio, TV, phone, bicycle or motorcycle]). According to the UNDP, one out of every five inhabitants in the world lives in poverty.
What makes the difference between a prosperous society and a poor one? Is it how old the country is, the natural resources it has, its intellectual ability or its citizen’s ethnicity? No, it isn’t. There are rich countries today that don’t have oil nor a glorious past, or inhabitants who are ethnically superior. In contrast, there are other nations that in spite of having tremendous natural resources (like this morning’s Bible verse mentions), don’t make good use of them because they lack justice. That means that one of the determining factors of poverty also includes a moral element as a basic principle. In the most prosperous societies you’ll find that most of their citizens are neat and clean, honest, punctual, responsible, want to get ahead, respect the law and regulations, consider other people’s rights, have a positive attitude toward work, as well as an interest in saving and investing. In addition, societies that have a positive perspective about their future tend to be more prosperous.
I’ll never forget a financial analyst’s words when, referring to some countries with plentiful oil reserves, he said, «They will never be rich because poverty is in their heads.» It’s true. Wealth doesn’t merely limit itself to being a financial matter. Instead, it implies education, that is, acquiring a series of elements that promote a society’s whole wellbeing. But when there’s no justice and corruption, immorality, waste and impunity pervades, there’s no wealth that can survive.
Ask God today to help you develop habits that promote prosperity. So when money comes, you’ll know how to make good use of it in your life.