Do You Have What it Takes to Change the World?

Do you have what it takes to change the world?

Last week, the cover of TIME Magazine read “The Most Influential People in The World: The Time 100″ – A variety of people from different strata of life were mentioned – from musicians and actors to scientists and politicians ( or to use their categories Leaders & Revolutionaries, Builders & Titans, Artists & Entertainers, Scientists and Thinkers and Hero’s & Pioneers).

These 100 individuals were acknowledged based on “the idea that individuals – by virtue of their character, their drives and their dreams – change the world and make history.” Again my question to you is, “Do you have what it takes to change the world?’

Perhaps you are finding it difficult to answer this question, so let me answer it for you. YES, the answer is yes.

For that to be true there is a criteria we must accept as a kind of measuring stick. The first part of the criteria is that, you must be willing to look beyond yourself, your life situation and beyond your time. Individuals that make a lasting difference in this world work to make this world a better place, not for themselves but for the generations that will exist long after their own.

This, however, is not always well received in our society.

There is a thought that says, “time is fleeting” signifying that time is precious. If this is true, we must make the most of our lives while we have them. So working to leave a better world for the generations to come becomes a waste of precious time because we will not likely see the fruits of our labors.

Instead I would like to offer an opposite view. I maintain that “time is fleeting” for that fact can hardly be contended. Yet the difference is that working to make this world a better place for generations to come is not a waste of precious time at all. In all reality it is the only thing worth our time.

Working for and towards a better world, will undoubtedly yield its result in the present time, even if only to beckon awareness of a better place, time, and way of life.

–Next week I will continue my thoughts on this discussion–

  1. Zulema said:

    I pray that we will realize this “opposite view,” and get away from the individualistic pessimism that pervades our society. (and yay that you finally posted!) 🙂

  2. Melissa said:

    Well I have to say that this thought has crossed my mind and thank you for refreshing that thought! I can say that my worries for the future generations to come lies in having a four year old son and the worry of him and his kids and so on. Well i will leave it at that for now and wait for your next blog, can’t wait!

  3. Gilberto Del Vecchio said:

    I have enjoyed some much your thoughts about “changing the world….”
    We are not aware of how much influence we have on the people around us…
    I am glad that I am changing the world, at least the one around me….
    I am enjoying working together with you…bro
    and I am happy that you are brave enough to challenge us to be apart of this awareness.


  4. Gilbert, I will agree that you are doing everything you can to change your environment in the classroom, and I commend you for doing something I don’t think I could ever do. We need to come together as we journey together in ministering to our community here in the valley and really make a difference not for the Adventist Church but for God.

  5. Gilberto Del Vecchio said:

    you know we need to find an unique way to break through our community…(finding out what are our real needs here in the valley) and you know…the only way to do that is through Service….
    Hei I am an ESL teacher…Maybe we could offer some ESL classes here at church for free so that we could get to know some people, pass on some literature and get some Bible studies…I dont know…. In that way I could use some of my talents to change our’s that??

  6. Gilberto Del Vecchio said:

    I always have Evangelism in mind….hahha

  7. Melissa said:

    Wow Gilberto! I did not know that you worked with ESL kids! That is awesome! Also kudos to your comment David about making a diference for God! He told us to “Go ye therefore and teach all nations….”. May we all be used for His purpose!

  8. Melissa, you are right. There is no point in calling ourselves “Christians” if our Christianity does not extend beyond ourselves or the walls of our churches.

  9. sirojs said:

    I really appreciate your thought on this topic. Too little is done especially within our context. I suspect we are too busy evangelizing and forgetting that good news comes in concrete forms…tangible, touchable, edible, audible (sorry for my OCD). And in relation to time, I have a feeling that as Adventists, time is what we have. If we really believe in eternity…I mean really really believe in eternity, it has to be now when we actually do ‘have’ time for others. Havind said that, I suspect I really do struggle with really really trust God enough to live in the eternal now.

  10. Kaileen, that is an awesome link, I thought it was a link to your myspace, I didn’t realize that it wasn’t. Maybe we won’t change the entire world, but we can sure try to. I like the qoute from the movie Amazing Grace, “We’re too young to know that some things are impossible so we will do them anyway.” If more of us thought this way, the world would be such a different place.

  11. Siroj, I agree with you, that we might be too busy evangelizing and forgetting that good news comes in concrete things. It’s almost as though we have divorced the message of God from the action that God calls for us to do, like feed the hungry, clothes the naked, loosen the chains of oppression. We (or me as a life long Adventist) have had embedded into our minds that the entire purpose of life is getting into heaven. But I think when we embrace that notion, of heaven, as the only thing worth living for, we forget that heaven(eternal life) is about relationships with God and Others. The verse comes to mind from John 17:3 “this is eternal life that you may know God and Jesus Christ”- We don’t have to wait for heaven, to experience eternal life. For me the “eternal now” is embracing that the life we have, must be a life that enters into solidarity with everyone, especially the disenfranchised. Building the kingdom of God here and now, not as a substitute for heaven but as the preface of heaven. I think its an “idea” worth living for.

  12. sirojs said:

    I really love what you said at the end “Building the kingdom of God here and now,not as a substitute for heaven but as the preface of heaven. I think its an ‘idea’ worth living for.” This certainly is an idea worth dying for. I often tell my students that life consists mainly of finding that one thing that really matters and give our life for it. You said it much more beauitfully…an ‘idea’ worth living for. If I may add…’worth dying for.’

  13. I think sometimes finding that idea is so elusive to us. Because giving our life for something can be a big step. Maybe that’s why I hold Kierkegaard with such high esteem because he found that idea for his life.

  14. sirojs said:

    yes…and also the cowboy in the movie “city slickers” when he turned to Billy Crystle and said, ‘there is only one thing that matters in life…and that you’ve got to find it for yourself.’ I love this line.

  15. I have never seen that movie but I will check it out. wisdom is found everywhere.

  16. sirojs said:

    It is a comedy…but kind of fun to watch.

  17. David,
    Have we ever met? I really like your blog.

    Brian McLaren has a pretty good video that I think you’d like. See it here.

  18. Johnny, Yes I think we have met. If I remember correctly we took a class together at LSU with Dr. Teel. Thanks for the video link I will check out right now and get back to you. I hope everything is going well with you.

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