Countless research have shown evidence on the impact of education in reducing poverty. This is the reason why NGOs, CSOs and the national governments have intensified their efforts to strengthen the education of its population. The Global Partnership for Education has reported that:
- If all students in low income countries left school with basic reading skills there will be a 12% cut in global poverty.
- One extra year of schooling increases an individual's earnings by up to 10%.
- Wages, income and productivity are higher where women receive a better education.
So where is God in the equation? Is education really reducing poverty or is there a powerful God working at this and uses education as the tool for reducing poverty? Philippians 2:13 reminds us that "it is God who works" and not just us or our knowledge or education in itself. God is at work.
This Children's Month, we must educate children about the work of God in reducing poverty. We must emphasize that God loves people so much that God educates them and gives them knowledge to raise their living condition. Let us be careful about teaching them "the fallacy" that education is the key to fight poverty. Instead, we must emphasize God's work. Three steps needs to be settled to know how education can reduce poverty. If we can answer these 3 questions, people will see the real reason how poverty is reduced. Deuteronomy 11:13, 19 guides us in answering these steps.
- Who will teach? "You..." v19
- When and where to teach? "...when you are sitting... walking... lie down... or rise up..." v19
- What to teach? "love the Lord your God, and serve Him with all your heart..." v13