By Cris Evert Berdin Lato

The author is in third year at the University of the Philippines, Cebu College, taking a BA in Mass Communication. She’s also active in Youth for Christ.

Imagine a world where no human exists. Animals and plants are there, the wind blows and rivers keep on flowing. Trees bear fruit and the sea continues to produce fish; yet no man exists. The sun rises in the east and sets in the west without catching a glimpse of a single individual. Now if we will try to go back to reality, nature still continues the same routine with the presence of one being - man. Everything is turning out fine without man, but we often find ourselves asking, ‘Why does man exist?’ Man came into this world and destroyed the blissful world God created. If this is so, why did God create man?

Constantly we are plagued with different questions. We wonder why something happens and why we exist. More often than not we get the answers to all these questions but the greatest point is asking ourselves about the person that we are. Why do we exist? Why do you exist? In creation history, God created man on the sixth day, after He had set up everything for him. He let man name all the creatures. God created man in his own image and likeness. This statement alone manifests the responsibility that God bestows upon man. He created man because He believes that man is capable of doing things that He could do; that is the reason why man is called the caretaker or steward of God’s creation. God granted man the wisdom to think, say and do things that are right. He never gave wisdom because He wants man to use it with evil intent. God gave man wisdom so that he would take care of God’s creation.

God and I

God created man for very special reasons: to let him know God as his father; to let man know that as a Father, He truly loves him; to serve God by taking care of His creation; and to be with Him. Yet what did man do? He used God’s creation for his earthly desires. He abused nature for himself to prosper. He destroyed the beauty of God’s creation and let himself be manipulated by his animal instincts. This should not have happened! As said, man was given wisdom and because of this he is rational. He has the capacity to think, and that is thinking for the betterment of all. Naturally, God created man as a free and loving being. But man did not know the true essence of freedom and love. Freedom is not a license and does not mean that you can do whatever you want to do. Therefore, it is not freedom when man cuts down trees without a justifiable purpose. Likewise, loving has been misinterpreted. It takes real freedom to love. People often say that they are in love but the truth is, they are just in love with the idea of love. Why are there failed marriages? Why do some men hire prostitutes to fill their earthly desires?

Man is created in the image and likeness of God. God is within each one of us. Thus, man has no right to abuse others. If one hurts his fellow human, he is also hurting God. God is the source of all goodness. God created man; therefore man is fundamentally good. In spite of man’s evil doings, he still has hope to change himself. Changing one’s self for the better will be possible if there is genuine determination and a deep conviction to change.

Your Values and the World

But the world that we are in is a world with various beliefs and a world that imposes different values. These values often go beyond or may even fall short of what God labeled as moral values. God created a Utopian World but later on, as many human beings came into existence, the world changed. It became confusing and offered ambiguous responses to problems. Politics, economics, personal intentions and the like govern the world. It has become so complex that if someone relates himself to the world, he either gets himself lost or finds himself confused. The word ‘world’ per se is not anymore used as a global term. Rather it now has its personal connotation: my world, your world. When a human person does his own thing, which is different from what others do, he is said to be ‘doing things in his own world.’ It is really tiring to think of and, worse, to do things to change the world. When you attempt to save the world, you end up facing difficult problems and so you have no choice but to quit. This is where cooperation among human beings must enter.

A Better World

In order to achieve a better world, it all boils down to man, his very essence as a human being. If one wants to change the world for the better, one must first try to make oneself better, as a person and as God’s child. One cannot give the world true happiness if within oneself happiness is absent. Somehow, a human being and the world complement each other. As a human being does things, whether good or bad, the world is affected. As the world continues to move and cope with fast-paced changes, man in turn is affected. The existence of a human being is to see to it that he does things for the betterment of all, not just because of his own desires, whims and caprices. If a human being learns to discover and probe in deeper detail that God brought him in this world for the purpose of being his steward, he will have the chance to make the world better. With the help of other individuals, man then lives a genuine life as the person that he truly is.   He then learns to cope with the world that he lives in and maintain the world God created for him.You may contact the author