In the early twentieth century, a popular publication asked the question: “What is wrong with the world?” The question received several different responses, but the shortest and probably the most significant response came from G.K. Chesterton, who simply stated, “I am.”
What a bold and truly honest answer. G.K. Chesterton is a well-known and highly esteemed Catholic writer and theologian. For him to answer this question by placing all that is wrong with the world on himself was a surprising and courageous move.
As unexpected as that answer may have been, what might be even more surprising is that he was right – right, in the sense that we all contribute to what is wrong with the world.
In today’s society, we are always quick to point the finger at someone else for any problems that arise. We like to run away from taking responsibility for what went wrong. How would the world look if we all admitted to our mistakes and took on the consequences of our actions?
I live in a different century, yet I find myself faced with the same question G.K. Chesterton encountered and find I also must answer it with the same response: “I am.”
I am a weak, flawed and sinful individual. I am far from perfect, and often let fear govern my decisions instead of trusting in the Lord and allowing Him to govern every action of my life. Even when I am at my best, there is always a fear embedded into my DNA. This fear is the direct result of sin, and of Satan entering in and taking control of me.
This is the easiest answer for what keeps Satan in control of this world – his ability to instill fear in people. Fear is my most difficult emotion to overcome, because it transforms my perception of the world, and I lose the capability to see clearly and to see the Lord essentially.
During this Lenten season, I am choosing to take G.K. Chesterton’s answer to this question as a challenge. I am what is wrong with the world; now what am I going to do about it? Lent is the perfect time to reflect on this challenge and to take drastic steps to transform my life. I no longer want to contribute to the world’s problems, but instead contribute to their solution.
The Gospel reading for the Second Sunday of Lent was the Transfiguration of Jesus Christ. It describes the moment where everything changed, and Jesus was confirmed as the Son of God in the presence of three of His disciples.
Jesus Christ was transformed, and if I allow it, I can be transformed during this Lent as well. Jesus asks us to come to Him with all our brokenness, and then allow Him to take control. I am and always will be what is wrong with the world, but if I let Jesus Christ do what He wills with my life, my sinfulness will never be able to take control because Jesus is more powerful than sin.
I actively choose to give my life to God every day. As long as I continue this practice, Satan will never be able to dictate how I deal with my fear. Instead, Jesus Christ will control my fear, and He will make sure that only good comes from the way I address it.