If I ask you this question, “What’s wrong with the world?” how would you respond? Each person who answers the question is likely to have a different answer. In 1907, the London Daily News asked that question to all of the prominent philosophers of the day. One answer stood out among the others. Interestingly enough, it is still the correct answer today. Find out what it was. I invite you to read more.
Dear London Daily News,
G. K. Chesterton
If each one of us answered that question honestly, our answer would be the same as Chesterton’s. I am what’s wrong with the world today because I am a flawed person. Today is part two of my nine-part series leading up to the 500th 4th Day Letter.
Last week, in part one, I wrote, “How Do We Serve God?” I presented the three dimensions of The Kingdom of God, and I placed emphasis on the idealistic/ mystical dimension which says that the Kingdom of God resides in the heart of man. To serve God, we must make sure God is in our heart and we must take the message of God’s mercy to others so that He can dwell in their heart as well.
Immediately we discover a dilemma. How can we serve God when we ourselves are flawed, hurting and broken people? The sad reality is that many Christians, knowing of their own shortcomings and sins, feel they must first completely rid themselves of their sins and brokenness before they can begin to evangelize others. There is a danger of placing a priority on the pursuit of personal perfection over God’s plan for us to evangelize others. Doing so, leaves us inwardly focused when God wants us focused on others.
Regrettably, many Christians are afraid to evangelize others out of fear that they will be perceived as phony or hypocritical Christians. God has a long history of calling broken people into service. He knows, we too, are broken, and that is precisely why He is calling us today. We have a story to tell.
This ministry is rooted in the belief that no one is better prepared to share the message of Jesus Christ with the world than another flawed and broken person, who has had a life altering personal encounter with the mercy of Jesus Christ. This makes you and me extraordinarily qualified evangelizers. After all, the Church is a field hospital for the lost and broken.
It has been said that the message of Jesus is completely misunderstood if it is separated from the context of the faith and hope of the Chosen People. What were the Jewish people in the Old Testament waiting for? They were waiting to be delivered from their bondage.
The Jews knew that Moses had delivered them from slavery, but they were still waiting for a New Exodus in which their Messiah would restore Israel and once again deliver them from bondage. You and I, as Christians, recognize Jesus as the Messiah. The reality is, however, far too many people are still waiting to be delivered from their bondage.
You and I have a mission from God. We are challenged to become a joyful community of Christian disciples, who are moved by love, to seek the lost and broken people of our world and bring them home to God. Are we willing to respond to this challenge?
If we are going to be effective in responding to this challenge we must first accept, that we too, are counted among the lost and broken and we are constantly in need of the redeeming grace of our Savior Jesus Christ. Like Adam and Eve, we sin then we deny it, eventually we admit it and we repent, only to sin again.
Can I ask you for a moment of honesty? Are you willing to admit that you have recurring sin in your life? Are you prepared to acknowledge that when you confess your sins to God it sounds like a broken record? I am!
A pastor once told me that in order to be an effective evangelizer, I had to first come to grips with my own brokenness. This is true for all of us. Jesus is called the Savior of the world, precisely because we all need to be saved.
Before closing, I would like to invite you to join me in a quick exercise. Take a small piece of paper and label it, “My Purple Paper”. On side one, write down any way in which you have been wounded by others or wounded by living in a broken world. On side two, write down your most frequently recurring sin. This sin is likely your well-guarded secret. Put your paper away in a safe place. I will refer to it later in this series.
The exercise above reaffirms what we read in Romans 3:23 when it tells us that, “all have sinned and are deprived of the glory of God.” Next week we will explore “God’s Greatest Blessing,” and discover why it, when combined with our brokenness, forms the story line that we are called to share with others.
Heavenly Father, I acknowledge that I am a sinner in need of being saved. Thank you for the gift of your Son Jesus. Amen!
As always, I love to read your comments below as well as hear from you personally by clicking here.
There is still time to win your free book. Many of you have already submitted your suggestions. I am writing a yearly devotional book. I am in the process of selecting 52 of the past 4th Day Letters, one for each week of the year. Each one will be presented in the book with a series of questions to reflect on for a week. I am asking for your input. Please write to me and tell me what your favorite 4th Day Letters are. I will randomly draw the names of ten people who respond, and they will receive a FREE copy of the book as soon as it is published. Entries must be received no later than May 28, 2021. The ten winners will be announced on June 1, 2021.