European People-Gifts Beyond Geographic Locations
People Gifts – Part 3
From each of the people groups that exist, there is also a unique gift or trait that follows its people. This is the main reason for this content. We refer to these unique gifts as people-gifts. In the previous installment, we highlighted the gift you find in the “eastward” people group. For this installment, we will highlight the gift found in those who we consider a part of the “northward” group.
As it pertains to the concept of “beyond borders”, what locations would constitute this “northward” group of people? Let’s take a moment to describe or review this “northward” direction. As we know, this northward group of people are those represented in Europe. Keep in mind that today’s view of Europe is one of the smaller land masses when we speak in terms of continents. However, Europe, better stated “northward” extends to and includes Russia. Combining Europe and Russia as we know them today makes it considerably larger and what you expect in the size of a continent.
Nonetheless, this installment has very little to do with the geography, but more to do with the people who exist in these areas. Before I continue, allow me to apologize upfront. When speaking of people, we lack the appropriate wording, descriptors, and terminology. Because of this we could possibly unintentionally offend someone in the group. It is not our intent to offend anyone nor bring negative light on any of God’s people groups. With that said, when you hear European, what are your thoughts? My thoughts are of people who in my country we refer to as “white.” Since writing on people groups I find such a term quite limiting and quite demeaning. This group of people like any other have an array of defining characteristics like any other. A person’s default thinking is of those who live in France, Italy, and the U.S. of America. Most likely we don’t think Russia, as we’ve been taught to keep Russia segmented, but Russian certainly qualifies when it comes to physical appearances. While this is the case, it’s not that simple to classify people who live in these areas in this way. Before we go there, allow me to share with you something very unique about these areas that include all of Europe and Russia that we refer to as “northward.”
When we take a look into this “northward” people-group, we find something very unique that is specific to this group alone. One of our practices in life is to find the good in others because identifying the bad or negative is common and easy. This “northward” people-group has what I call an innate desire to explore. When I say explore, I mean explore to the extreme. This people group has a desire to map out the globe, travel to the ends of the earth via land, air, and water. This group of people won’t stop there. In fact, it’s this group who has the greatest desire to explore beyond earth. This group can’t stop at reaching the moon, but have an appetite to reach other planets and other galaxies if necessary.
If you recall in our history books, in the 1950s during the time of the cold war, there was a space race. This race focused on being the first to launch a satellite and put a man into space. What’s interesting about this space race were the athletes who were competing. Allow me to say who was not competing to make the case more visual. People from the “eastward”, “southward” and “westward” groups had no desire to be in this race, specifically Asians, Africans, and true Americans. Why? These groups’ primary gifting is not exploration. It was the “northward” people who lived in the U.S. of America and the “northward” people-group living in Russia who were in this race. Interesting right? If I might say it plainly without being offensive, this race was “white” versus “white” in this race to explore space, contained in the “northward” people-group. This amazing gift that God has given humanity has provided the world with an uncountable number of benefits like television signals, GPS, air travel and so much more. This gift of exploration extends beyond simply exploring, but to our next point.
Settling and Colonization
This “northward” people-group are known as settlers and colonizers. Their gifts push them to explore new places. They will move and inhabit territories that no other group would. Another name for this ability is what we call trailblazing, one who carves the path for others to follow through unsettled regions. This “northward” people group will overcome their fears of the unknown so that others can know. Imagine this.
All of humanity at one point thought of the world as being flat. This idea placed limits on how far out a person would sail, thinking that you could possibly fall out the edge of the world. This “northward” people-group being the explorers that they are ,however, would venture into the unknown in order to prove it one way or another. We’ve all heard of their stories and attempts to sail around the world or for that matter to even circumnavigate the globe by air. I read one statistic which proves this point further. There are only 5 or 6 countries on earth that have not been colonized or influenced by this “northward” people-group. Even if this stat isn’t accurate, it isn’t far from the truth. This people group beyond its ability to explore brings to the world its unique ability to expand the lands people inhabit as well as visit places that are uninhabitable at this time.
Blended Northward Borders
If I may, I would like to offer a missing dynamic to this “northward” group and provide one reason why I find it inappropriate to segment people by locations like Europe and Russia. Because the northward migrants have invisible borders with the eastward section and the westward section, we have to consider what happens at those borders that have gone unsaid. Have you ever heard of “European-Asians” (eastward border) or “European-Americans” (westward border)? Again I must state the obvious, most people have not. Most people think of Americans as Europeans by default. When we speak of Americans it is not those of European or northward descent, but rather those you find in the entire continent of North, Central, and South America combined. This group is what we will discuss in our next installment. Even when we speak of the northward people-group, there is a dominant descent that at its borders have been blended by the descent of its bordering people-groups. Therefore, in the northward people-group you have a notable diversity within the group which blend with Americans on its west boundaries and Asians on its east boundaries.
As I noticed a pattern emerging from my studies, I had to repeat the same questions I asked for the first group I studied. That question goes like this, since we are looking at the “northward” people-group, are there any European-Asians? Since the east border of the northward group touches the west border of the eastward group (Asia), that is what I would expect to find. Then on its westward border, I would find European-Americans. Allow me to explain how these answers played out.
There is a European population who have some degree of Asian descent. European-Asians exist in Turkey and places near Kazakhstan, but aren’t just limited to these places. Imagine that. In these locations are inhabitants who are mostly European and partially Asian in nature, so to speak. Thusly, we bring two amazing groups of people together.
If asking the question about the east border of the northward group produced the above findings, what would asking the same question about the west border provide us? Could there possibly be European-Americans that are not considered “white” Americans? No offense intended. In my research to discover this truth about God’s people-groups, I came across an area on the map or past maps called “Beringia.” It was also known as the “Beringia Bridge.” It’s the landmass that once connected East Europe (Russia) to the continent of the greater Americas. This bridge which represents the connection between the northward and westward people-groups explains why we have European countries with American descent and American areas with European descent prior to the British and French exploration of the west as we’ve been taught for years. It’s said in some studies that a third of the ancestry of today’s “native” Americans can be traced back to the northward boundaries, we call Russia. This finding was the additional proof I needed to validate this idea of people-groups and their gifts. While this was again hard for me to fathom at first, I was on to something. Sure enough, there’s this group of people who exist in, but not limited to, Siberia and surrounding areas, who are what I call European-Americans. Talk about expanding our thinking of people.
The more I dig into this concept, it explains a lot about what we see in the people around us. It might be said better this way. It explains a lot about what we don’t see in the people around us. The borders to the main people-group of northward and eastward show us not only how diverse the world is, but also how it became such an array of beautiful people, cultures, and gifts. When these people-groups northward and eastward combine, the gift of exploration merges with the gift of innovation. When the people groups northward and westward combine, the gifts create something just as special which we will uncover in our next installment.
The Bible reminds us that the gifts we have should be used to serve others.  That means the gifts that God places within a group of people were placed there to serve the other groups of people. That also means that the term people-gifts is a perfect way of describing the people-groups we see throughout the earth.
Question: what people-gifts are becoming more obvious for you as we unpack this idea of people-gifts?