Financial priorities — ’Avatar’ or Haiti relief?

An interesting graphic and blog in the tech magazine Fast Company this morning makes an interesting point about how we do and should spend our money.

Before you go clicking on the hyperlink above, please be aware the link is to the magazine’s home page and not the blog itself. Part of the heading of the graphic – which links to another Web site – has some rough adult language. Simply scroll down until you see a close-up of the eye on the face of a blue avatar and you can link to the blog from there. Profanity aside, there is a valid point being made here.

The blog references a site which challenges the millions of viewers of ‘Avatar’ to give to the Haiti relief fund in the same amount they spent at the theater to see the movie, including the price of any concessions they may have bought.

It also features a graphic which illustrates how much each nation’s estimated contribution commitments to Haiti relief efforts have been thus far compared to the cost of filming ‘Avatar.’ No country gets past the first few scenes of the three-plus hour film. The U.S., comparatively, gets six minutes into the movie.

Sobering thoughts?

Absolutely, particularly considering Wednesday’s rough aftershock and challenging relief efforts which are just getting under way point to a long-term international commitment toward what may essentially be a nation-building exercise.

From a Christian standpoint, it’s a valuable reminder of the time, talents and treasure argument about letting your checkbook reflect your faith. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t go to the theater or enjoy some other leisure activity, but it does mean thinking seriously about how and where you spend your money, including long after the Haiti crisis is resolved.

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