DEAR REV. GRAHAM: I got very discouraged reading all the stories and seeing all the programs at the end of the year that looked back over the bad things that happened during 2010. Do you think the world is ever going to get any better? —W.Q.
Dear W.Q.: It's easy to get discouraged about the world, isn't it, because little seems to have changed for the better in the course of the past year. Even when some things improved, others got worse.
Will the world ever get any better? In some ways, it won't; we'll still have wars, and we'll still have natural disasters and manmade upheavals. Yes, we'll probably continue to make advances in science and technology; hopefully we'll gain an upper hand over some of the diseases that devastate the human race. And yet conflicts and injustices continue to plague us, and will until Christ comes again to establish His Kingdom of righteousness and peace. What Job said thousands of years ago is still true: "Man is born to trouble as surely as sparks fly upward" (Job 5:7).
Why is this? The basic problem is within us — within our own hearts and minds. We ignore God's laws and reject His rightful place in our lives, and we live instead for ourselves and our own selfish desires. The Bible says, "What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you?" (James 4:1).
Our greatest need is to submit to God and allow His Spirit to change us from within. And that can happen, as we turn to Christ and commit our lives to Him. The new year is still young — but no matter what happens in the months ahead, put Christ first in your life and make it your goal to follow Him.