Being Normal

All my life I have had little interest in being “normal”. Even in my earliest memories of people and things around me, every time I perceived what was normal, I didn’t care for it. All through school, through a mission, through a career, businesses and worldly pursuits I have never wanted to be what the world considers normal.

The word “normal” means “conforming to the standard or common type”, and is derived from the root word “norm” which means average or ordinary.

It would be interesting to take every living person and every attribute they possess and derive an average human being today, so I did some research and with some assumptions came up with this:

Out of 7 Billion people, the average human is 28 years old, looks like a Chinese/Indian mixture, makes less than $12,000 a year, has a cell phone but not a bank account, is not married, has at least one child, has never heard of Jesus Christ, has never attend a religious service, and is hungry right now. That’s the world’s norm.

Nothing I read about in the scriptures promises exaltation to the “normal” of the earth, the “normal” in heart, or those who are “normal” in the testimony of Jesus. For this reason, I have never aspired to normalcy.

Let me think, out of 7 Billion people, there are:

2.7 Billion Christians or 38% or 1 in 3

14 million members of the LDS church = .002 % or 1 in 500

7 million “active” members = .000642 % or 1 in 1000

3 million temple recommend holders = .0004 % or 1 in 40,000

150,000 all-time readers of UnBlogMySoul = .000021 % or 1 in 50,000

10,000 occasional readers of UnBlogMySoul = .0000014 % or 1 in a million

5,000+ people I have met at firesides = .0000007% or 1 in 2 million

600 daily readers of UnBlogMySoul = .000000086 % or less than 1 in 10 million

See how wonderfully abnormal you are?

Brother John

P.S. All data is approximately correct and subject to my too-long-since-college math.

© December 2011, John M. Pontius, all rights reserved. Non-commercial reproduction permitted.

About John Pontius

I am a lover of truth.
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14 Responses to Being Normal

  1. Diane says:

    We need these occasions when someone takes the time to show us how incredibly wonderful and blessed we are to be actively involved in the work of Jesus Christ. I am so blessed.

    Thank you again Bro. John for waking me up to the reality of the path which I am on.


  2. Brenda Esselman NC says:



    • Frostie says:

      Yet the Lord knew this would be the case, that there would be few who listen, and they would be far between. A lonely place, yet we are not alone.

      Between the whisperings of the spirit — and the modern blessings of internet — I wonder how many really can accept there really is an intangible cord connecting us together.


  3. Lisa says:

    I understand your point, and I think we are blessed with amazing opportunities that we need to reach out and share, but your math is off. 1 in 500 are members, 1 in 1000 are active members, 1 in 2500 hold temple recommends, people met at firesides=1 in 2 million, etc.


  4. Frostie says:

    I was interested in your 38% Christian in the world. That would include all walks of life “Christians”, including non-practicing or “lapsed” types. I just heard on the Today Show Ann Curry admit she is a “lapsed” Catholic.

    One thought – Even though there are so many non-practicing Christians in the world — isn’t it wonderful that the Spirit and tradition of Christmas has so permeated the world psychie, that “peace, good will toward men” still has an effect. I simply think (in spite of the commercialism) it is the Spirit of Christ, and it can be more abundantly felt.


  5. Laura says:

    Ha! I’ve never felt normal either, or average, or even accepted by the normal or average people. I think growing up as one of 2 active LDS members in our High School of 2,000 cemented the feeling of being “other”. While it was hard then, I kind of like it now as I find not complying with the norm to be rather liberating!


  6. strategicreader says:

    Brother John,
    I love you. You made me laugh out loud. I always knew I was weird. It is good to have good weird friends.
    Thank you again for your time and effort.
    Merry Christmas my friend.


  7. Adrian says:

    Hi Brother John,

    Please forgive my ignorance, but where are you getting this figure of 9 million church members? I’ve heard you say that in fireside recordings, but not sure how you reconcile that with the official published numbers. I’m sure you have good reasons for the difference, but I’m not sure what they are. Can you share or point me to the background?


    • John Pontius says:

      No, you are right. There are 14 million members. So sorry. I should just leave math out of the Un-Blog! I adjusted the figures, which are still heavily based on assumptions.

      Thanks for catching that,



  8. Sharon Cox says:

    Interesting that you brought up this subject because recently I have been contemplating the same thing. Unlike you, I lived much of my life “normal”, but as my understanding of things eternal increases, the further and further I have gone away from norm, to where I am now at the point where I feel a sense of aloneness in that there is no one around me with whom I can share the wonderful things that the Spirit is teaching me because they just wouldn’t get it.

    I am so grateful for this unblog, it is the only place where my spirit feels at home in a crowd.


    • John Pontius says:

      You know, I was goign to mention that in the post, that I was so grateful for the UnBlog because I felt “normal” here. But, I got wound up in the math and didn’t remember to include that.




  9. K-Jo says:

    I think it is mind boggling to realize exactly what a minority we really are. I did a graph to show the percentage of members of the church one time for a lesson and it really put things into perspective. How blessed we are, but how busy we better be improving, growing, studying, searching, asking, receiving and fulfilling the purpose we came to fill. Definitely no time to sit on our laurels! That was a fun blog to read. Thanks.


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