The Closing Window of Population Growth

We are about to go through a major shift as the window closes on the dramatic population boom of the late 20th Century and early 21st. We have come to assume unlimited population growth as countries like China, India, Brazil and Kenya have grown in influence and resources. But as the Global South urbanizes and has access to education and resources, the population trends will change. Explore that dramatic reality in today’s infographic.
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<p><img src="https://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/missio-graphics/Volume+2/missiographic-PopulationTrends.jpg" alt="" width="800" /></p>
<p><a href="https://missionexus.org/the-closing-window-of-population-growth/"><strong>The Closing Window of Population Growth</strong></a><br />We are about to go through a major shift as the window closes on the dramatic population boom of the late 20th Century and early 21st. We have come to assume unlimited population growth as countries like China, India, Brazil and Kenya have grown in influence and resources. But as the Global South urbanizes and has access to education and resources, the population trends will change. Explore that dramatic reality in today’s infographic.</p>
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Personal Reflection
Imagine little children playing in the streets and young people everywhere. As you watched the coverage of the protests in Egypt, Ukraine and so many other places, the faces are predominantly young. It is likely that you have given to an orphanage or sponsored a child. But think about a world that will be increasingly older. What does that mean for your personal ministry focus? How will you respond understanding that by 2050 the average global age will be around 44 instead of 24? Ask God how that should affect your prayer life, your giving and your missional efforts.

Engaging the Church
Already in many parts of the world the populations are aging. China is growing old at an alarming rate. Parts of Europe are in negative population growth. Is your church thinking about how it might need to serve an aging world? What happens when there are millions more entering retirement than entering college? What stresses will that put on your community and the communities you are committed to serve globally? Take time in your church to think through these scenarios and ask how your church can be preparing for service to an older population.

Organizational Application
Understanding population trends is critical for any ministry. Movements like the 4/14 Movement are advocating the importance of reaching young people with the Gospel. As you understand the changing dynamic of global population, how will you respond to this rapidly closing window? What can you do to reach young people before the average global age is 44 in 2050? By then they will have children (but only a few) and be much more established in their belief systems and life expectations. At the same time, with the realization that an older world is upon us, what can you do to begin developing ministries for these huge numbers in the older generations? Whether it be ministry to professionals, engaging factory workers or caring for the elderly, it is important to know that this will be a growing part of the needs to be addressed in the world.

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