Do you remember the days when you were learning to read? Probably not. Reading is such an automatic exercise that we really don't even notice we are doing it. But just imagine if you had never been taught. That is truly a scary image.
Obviously "extras" like the internet and socail media would be out - how could you even set up a new account? But imagine not even being able to read the road signs, or figure out how to navigate the bus or train system. What's the name of your stop? How do you say where you are going? How could you ask for directions?
Even paying for items would be a challenge. Sure, maybe numbers could be figured out, but what if there's a sale or a clearance, or anything that uses words?
The website www.ourworldindata.org/literacy gives an interesting insight into literacy. "Literacy levels for the world population have risen drastically in the last couple of centuries. While only 12% of the people in the world could read and write in 1820, today the share has reversed: only 17% of the world population remains illiterate. Over the last 65 years the global literacy rate increased by 4% every 5 years – from 42% in 1960 to 86% in 2015." It goes on to say that poorer countries have lower literacy rates. Only 36.5% of those aged under 24 in Niger, for example, can read.
The website also makes the claim that literacy is connected to reducing inequalities. It can be a fast-track out of poverty and a way to reduce racism. That seems to make sense. How much more difficult would it be to hold a job without being able to read? Or learn a new job?
So, if you can read this, Give Thanks! Someone passed on to you a great gift, and gave you yet another reason to be Thankful.
Lord, we thank you for the gift of being able to read. May we truly treasure and appreciate it, and use it to our benefit. Amen.
This blog is written by the Baskets & Blessings team, to inspire, encourage and elevate!