It was a great Sunday of music and encouraging preaching. The service was ending, and all of a sudden and seemingly out of nowhere came the Holy Spirit inspired word for the Church: “You alone decide how dynamic your relationship with God is. You cannot blame anyone else for your complacency.”
To those who were listening, it came like a bombshell, and it is perhaps the most important lesson that our generation needs to hear.
How many of us have it written in our DNA to blame others for who we are, the decisions we make, and where we are in our relationship with God? The underlying issue is our lack of taking responsibility for our lives.
How many times have we used phrases like, “He made me so mad!” and “He offended me!” without even thinking? Eleanor Roosevelt said, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” Couldn’t it easily be said as well, “No one can offend you without your consent”? The truth is that I CHOOSE to be mad and I CHOOSE to be offended. What would happen if I took responsibility for my emotions?
How many times have we blamed our upbringing for the ways that we fall short as adults? Maybe it is inability to cook, lack of tidiness in the house, or a struggle to connect with someone due to past trauma. Perhaps it is a fear that leaves us paralyzed and held in emotional bondage. Perhaps it is an inability to keep a budget. Maybe we struggle with submitting to authority. It is understandable for things to be more challenging for us based on past experiences, but the problem lies in choosing to stay that way for years and not grow. What if we took responsibility for our challenges and trauma? What if we reached out for counseling, mentoring, classes, or a friend to come alongside us as we grow? Maturity does not allow for excuses; maturity takes responsibility.
And what excuses do we give for our immature relationship with God? Perhaps we think we do not have the time to invest in reading Scripture or prayer. Perhaps we feel that we do not have the tools we need to dig deep into the meanings of passages. Perhaps we feel that we do not have a support system that pulls us in and encourages us to grow. The truth is, we all have the same 24 hours in a day and 7 days in a week. How we choose to spend that time is based on the priorities that we either actively or passively set for our lives. Why not be active in deciding how your limited time on earth will be spent? And here is an idea: YOU become the support system that encourages people to grow in Christ. YOU step up and challenge the community around you to KNOW Christ and grow in Him. YOU be the change!
I fully believe that when we take responsibility for our lives, we will not have time to feel sorry for ourselves or blame others. We will be too busy living productive and healthy lives that not only benefit us and our families, but bless those around us. Ask God to point out to you the ways that you have blamed others or your experiences for your lack of growth. Seek His forgiveness, and move forward in maturity!