We met with Becky and Ben Gambrell this week. For three years they were missionaries in Brazil, currently one of the poorest countries in the world. The Gambrells said in Brazil there was little in the way of medicine and little in the way of material goods, and so on. Ben said he found the transition hard coming back to the States because he’d hear people here complaining about what he now perceived as tremendously small things — in comparison to the plight of the people in Brazil. For instance, I’d just read that some 2,000 orphaned children in the slums of Brazil are tortured and killed every year (by police) because they’re begging for food, for instance, is a nuisance. Meanwhile many American kids are living with touch I-Phones, X-Boxes, three full meals a day and snacks… and regularly wanting more to boot. We would all do well to take some “cross-cultural” trips to impoverished countries, to not only put life in America in perspective, but to make these other peoples’ plights a lot more real — so we’d feel compelled to help more. Our foreign aid is currently 4%, and a lot of it goes to countries to help protect our interests (read: things like oil). Some 57% of our budget goes to our military — which is more than: the next 17 countries combined. You read that right.