Is it just me, or does it seem like more and more people are refusing to accept responsibility for their actions?
A burglar breaks into someone’s home, is injured by tripping over a toy on the floor, sues the homeowner for his injuries — and wins.
A person driving a vehicle spills hot coffee on their lap, causes an accident, sues the place from where the coffee was purchased because the coffee was too hot — and wins.
These days, the object is to blame the other person; accept no responsibility for your decisions.
God has created everyone with the ability to make choices. But many people forget that actions have consequences.
Whenever we make choices that go against God’s wishes and desires, we can only blame ourselves.
We can't say, “So-and-so made me do it," nor can we say, “The devil made me do it,” because a person has free will.
People or circumstances may lead you to a particular situation that requires a difficult choice, but you make the final choice, one way or the other.
Sometimes, we are victims of other people’s actions toward us. This may explain certain behaviors or feelings in some people, but it does not excuse it.
Each person is ultimately responsible for his or her own decisions. Granted, there are extreme situations. But for the vast majority of us, the choice rests with each one of us alone.
GROW AS A PERSON
Exercising your free will can bring about various lessons.
Many are very pleasant lessons — like when you choose wisely and bring about a positive outcome.
Some lessons are very painful — like when you choose poorly and bring about a negative outcome.
It is important to remember, when you accept responsibility for your own actions, you will ultimately grow into a better person. The reason for caving in to temptation will eventually dissipate, and resisting temptations will become easier over time.
Don’t play the blame game.
Don’t blame God.
Don’t pass the buck to someone else.
Accept responsibility for your own actions.
Better yet, use your free will to follow the ways of God in the first place, and you will avoid a whole mess of messes.
The Rev. Mark Broadhead is Laurel Hill Presbyterian Church and First Presbyterian Church of Crestview’s pastor.