Justin: In the Feast of Being Able to. Amen.

Thanksgiving 2011

Thanksgiving. Time to reflect on how filthy rich I am, and to acknowledge that I did nothing to deserve it.

The US population is roughly 310,000,000. To be among that number at all is a blessing; the most free country in the history of mankind. The most opportunity, by far, than anyone who has ever exited. No being born locked into serfdom or slavery, no having your job decided by government, and ACTUALLY, even your own laziness, bad luck, honest failure, or youthful idiocy do not (usually) preclude you from starting over and making a million or a billion dollars, or being whatever you want to be. Of course jail may, but i digress…

It’s not just a blessing, it’s a very rare honor. It is an absurdly improbable rare honor.

But wait! There’s more!

The fact that I am in the top 5% of the wealthiest people in the world today, is humbling. Actually, it is breathtaking. Yes, if you make just 25,200 dollars a year, you fall within the top 10% richest people in the whole world. Just 33,700 dollars gets you in the top 5%. You make 50k? The top 1%.

A rough estimate of all people who have lived in the past 10,000 years is 107,602,707,791. To be alive today is a privilege for just 6.8 Billion of us, which puts us in the top 6.3%.
But wait! What’s this? There’s even more!

But even in the most luxurious of ages, not everyone is free. The present day internet-enabled, hot shower and high def, 500 thread count Taco Bell U.S. citizen awesomeness is 310,000,000. That makes me in the elite 4.5% of the 6.3%. And that’s just for the OPPORTUNITY that U.S. citizenship offers. Thus, I am in the top .0028% most privileged people to ever breathe, just by where I live, but also by income, I am in the top 5% of the world.

Which pretty much makes me a living king.

Yes, I know there are cost of living considerations when making such comparisons, but that is hugely problematic, since your 50k might equate to a 500,000 rupee income in India, but that Indian may still not have access to a car, or maybe to clean water. Or maybe it is equal to 320,000 Yuan, but that Chinese man had his second daughter taken from him and killed in the hospital by his government, or the local police came into his home without a warrant and took all his religious books and materials, then crushed his ankles (true story).

Now, I could go on about where within these United States you live being a rare privilege, but if you’ve gone very far then you already know this.

For these earthly things I am so very thankful. But above all of this, I will be eternally grateful to Jesus Christ for stepping between me and the penalty for who I am, and for taking the brunt force of that punishment so that I never will.

Thank you, Lord, for your salvation. Thank you for all I have been given, and that even my friends have plenty.

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