Reading Blue Like Jazz, and loving it. On page 20 Donald Miller reminds me of something so obvious, I almost forget it every day. It brings me so much healing to remember. The world is a messed up place, but it's because it's filled wih messed up humans - like me. I cannot change the world, unless I first change myself. Like Gandhi once said "Be the change you wish to see". So simple. But I am really, the only thing I can change.
"I started wondering whether we could actually change the world. I mean, of course we could-we could change our buying habbits, elect socially conscious representatives and that sort of thing, but I honestly don't believe we will be solving the greater human conflict with our efforts. The problem is not a certain type of legislation or even a certain politician; the problem is the same that it has always been.
I am the problem.
I think every conscious person, every person who is awake to the functioning principles within his reality, has a moment where he stops blaming the problems in this world on group think, on humanity and authority, and starts fo face himself. I hate this more than anything. This is the hardest principle within Christian spirituality for me to deal with. The problem is not out there; the problem is the need beast of a thing that lives in my chest." (Donald Miller, Blue Like Jazz, Pg. 20)
Yes, indeed. It is within ourselves we must first look to change the world. This is why I think Christ taught so much on having the right heart. All of the 'rules and regulations' of organized religion, I think, are intended to help grow the right heart, but they get in the way a lot too.
It's also what's at the core of the meaning of having a 'fallen state', of the 'fall of man', of 'original sin'. You see, we are each responsible for the horrible things in this world. We are all called to deny the way within us that tells us to be selfish and hoarding, and instead to choose to be selfless and loving. But it takes work, because there is a beast within us, the "ego'' or 'original sin' or 'devil', that tempts us. We must learn to be good, teach each other and love each other. That is how God intended it to be. We have to work to make it so. Live like Christ. I really believe if everyone lived with Christs heart, lived the way he taught us to live, the world would be blissful. It would be perfect. It would be how God intended it to be. So I am a christian. I want to live like Christ, try to live with his heart.
I am the problem. Christ, in me, is the solution.