This I Believe

Robert - Burlington, North Carolina
Entered on December 13, 2006
Age Group: 50 - 65
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

This I Believe

Sometimes I think of the earth as God’s great experiment to see what would happen if the world with all its resources and a group of people that have free will were put together. Would we choose good over evil; work cooperatively rather than against each other? So far, we have not done that well, but I believe there is hope. Today, we are like the allegorical picture of heaven and hell where there are long tables of food and the people have long forks splinted to their arms. In hell, they try to feed themselves but cannot reach their mouths. In heaven, the people, though in the same situation, feed each other across the table. In many ways, we are trying to feed ourselves instead of trying to feed each other. The hope is that we will realize our errors before it is too late.

I believe in God as the creator of the universe, and as that being, a force that we can only vaguely understand. I am mystified by those who cannot put God’s creation and the Big Bang Theory in the same ‘big idea’. If we believe in a God that is all powerful, it would seem that the way things get done could be in ways we could not even dream. While the human race has come a long way from the nomadic tribes of the early Biblical times, I still think we see through a glass darkly and still have a very small capacity to understand the face of God. Our tendency to place God in our time and place restricts our ability to see a God that is beyond even our wildest imagination.

I believe that our God gave us a perfect world, but through our human frailties, we have allowed His creation to diminish until it is far from what it could or should be. I also believe that we have it in our power to return the world to a place that would be pleasing to God. In order to be successful, we have to take a world view. While I am grateful to have been born in the United States, I do not think it is our job as humankind to make America the greatest country on earth– I think it is much more important that we figure how to make the entire world work together. I think all the tools and resources are here for us to make it happen.

My father used to say that ‘we’ know NOTHING. It was his way of saying that there was so much information that we can’t comprehend it all. In his mind, there were forces that had the knowledge and controlled our lives. I think that ‘we’ corporately, know EVERYTHING! All the discoveries and learning over the millennia are there for us to use to make this world a better place. Our challenge is to use all of this collectively for the corporate good.

I believe that I can make a difference in this world. That is not to say that anyone will notice my efforts particularly, and I certainly don’t see myself as leaving a long lasting legacy for the work I will do during my lifetime. However, I am committed to giving my time, my talents, and resources to the greater good. I want to continue to work in my church to make it the best church possible. I want to continue to work in my community on things like Habitat for Humanity and at the Homeless Shelter to make our town a better place. I also want to have continuing opportunities to work on service projects around the country and around the world. My hope is that even if the work isn’t that special that it might at least encourage others to do the same. I firmly believe that if we all made an effort, great advances could be made.