I LOVE WORLD GEOGRAPHY! And you should too. Not only that, but you should have a deep desire to learn about our world (and love it in the process!). Spoken like a true Geography teacher, right? And maybe being a Geography guy is the only reason I get excited, but hang with me and you might just agree. ...
To most of you, World Geography is just another class. For some, maybe a class you didn’t enjoy in school. Or maybe you would even echo what I often hear when I tell people I’m a Geography teacher, “Oh, I was never good with maps.” Yes, locations, directions and maps are all important parts of World Geography. But if that’s all you think about when you think “geography,” than you’ve missed out on what I see as the most significant, interesting and meaningful purpose the topic has to offer: Growing in our understanding of and commitment to the Lord.
I believe the more we know and understand about our world, the more deeply we can come to know God (its creator). The first bullet point in the course objectives for World Geography states, “To be thankful for the variations in people created by God and develop attitudes of appreciation, sympathy, understanding and openness towards them.” Why is that important you may ask? The answer to that lies first in how we were created.
Genesis 1:27 puts it plainly: “So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” If all of mankind is created in the image of God then that means that we need to consider ALL of mankind to even get a glimpse of who God is. As of writing this, there are an estimated 7,593,622,000 people on the planet. Take every characteristic of those 7-plus billion; the personality traits, physical traits, thoughts, food preferences, cultural identity and more. Add it all together with the ten thousand years (give or take) of population from the past and those who may or may not come after us. If you do that with any real thought and effort, the complexity and depth of who God is will overwhelm you in an incredible way!
Then you can consider Jesus words in Luke 10:25-37 about loving our neighbor and that our neighbor is everyone. How can we truly love our “neighbor” if we don’t understand them? That’s going to have to be a topic for another post.
So today, in this increasingly global age, try to see the world and the people in it the way the Lord sees them, as His perfectly loved creation. Then, go learn something about the people of India, Burundi, Cuba … anywhere in the World or your next-door neighbor. Doing so will help you to better love and serve them in the name of Jesus Christ!
“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ,” Galatians 6:2.