Happy Birthday, G. K. Chesterton

Today is the 144th anniversary of the birth of Gilbert Keith Chesterton, the influential English writer, poet, novelist, biographer, social critic and Christian apologist of the last century.   
One of the most prolific writers of all time, Chesterton wrote thousands of essays, several hundred poems, two hundred short stories, eighty books (including five biographies), and several plays. He may be best known for his fictional priest/detective series, Father Brown.
As an essayist, Chesterton often addressed damaging forces he saw at work in the world—modernism, communism, modernism, eugenicsyet he did so with humor and good cheer. In these days of vitriolic social media, we could use a lot more people like Chesterton.
Though not as well known as many of his contemporaries, Chesterton’s influence is still vast. His works played a major role in the conversion of C. S. Lewis from atheism to Christianity. J.R.R. Tolkien said he was inspired by Chesterton’s remarkable ability to help people see things “as they are meant to be seen.” Larry Norman, the “father of Christian rock music,” cited Chesterton as a particular inspiration.
(It is fascinating to note that Larry Norman is the one who first suggested to Dale Ahlquist, the co-founder of the American Chesterton Society, that he should read books by Chesterton. “Chesterton is a lot better than C.S. Lewis,” Norman told a young Ahlquist. He added that that if Ahlquist read Chesterton, he wouldn’t need to read Lewis at all “because all of Lewis is in Chesterton.” Ahlquist took Norman’s advice and began reading Chesterton, eventually becoming so captivated he co-founded the American Chesterton Society. So we have Jesus rocker Larry Norman to thank for helping spark the Chesterton renaissance which has been led by Dale Ahlquist and the ACS.)
Happy birthday, G.K. Chesterton.