- For my hot temper. I’m Irish.
- For my lifelong indulgence in sensual behavior. I was molested at age 12.
- For wallowing in self-pity and under-achievement. I come from a broken home.
Living as we do in a crybaby society that encourages blame-casting and personal irresponsibility, it is interesting to note that the Scriptures allow us no such luxury.
You don’t see Jesus, for example, saying to Peter, “Pete, your dad was a pretty harsh taskmaster, growing up as you did the son of a fisherman. When you get around to it, and are feeling better about yourself, perhaps you would consider tagging along with Me. Give Me a buzz when you think you are ready.”
Or to Nathaniel, “You know Nate, you have a pretty sensitive disposition. I‘d like you to trust and believe in Me, but your alcoholic father scarred you for life. Perhaps we can work on the ‘trust‘ thing, when of course you have the time… and the inclination.”
Today I had lunch with Sam and his lovely wife Kerry , and their three adorable children. Frankly, I was blown away because Sam is the product of multiple foster homes and irresponsible parenting. Women, who are loved and treated with respect, “glow.” Kerry “glows.” And the kids? Alert. Confident. Well mannered. Secure.
In his teens, Sam became a high priced con artist. In his mid-20’s he met Christ. At 40, he is a successful businessman who gives large portions of his income to God’s work. Sam also travels the world, meeting with heads of state, and sharing Christ in the most dangerous of environs. On the side, he raises millions of dollars for propagating the Gospel. In a word, Sam has assumed responsibility for his life.
While the Scriptures express compassion for human weakness:
“We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak… ” (Romans 15:1b; See Psalm 41:1-3)
They do not temper Christ’s call to discipleship:
“If anyone would come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow Me. For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it.”
RESOLVE: That whatever my background or situation, I assume responsibility for my life. I choose to trust Christ for the necessary grace and healing to conform me into His likeness. By His grace and enabling I purpose to follow Him as a true disciple. (2 Corinthians 12:9; 1 Corinthians 1:27)