Whose fault is it?

Look at the picture above. It is one of our favorite mental pictures. It is very easy for us to assign responsibility to others when things go wrong, but do we think what our part in the process was? If we look at the hand, there’s one finger pointing outward and three inward. If you’re doing the pointing there are three fingers pointing at you.

Some things are out of our control in life; I’m not negating that…but it’s not as many as we tend to think.

Have you heard yourself say things like: this person makes me feel (angry, upset, irritable) or made me (eat, scream, nag, throw something)…unless the person has a weapon and threatening your safety. Was is truly this person’s fault or did you allow yourself into the behavior or emotion?  We also blame the circumstances around our lives. Most time we created those circumstances as well.

Sometimes we forget to take accountability for our own actions because it’s easier to blame others or the circumstances. The denial of our responsibility falsely releases us from having to address it or work on fixing it. By placing the responsibility outside of us, we convince ourselves that the answer is out of our hands, not realizing that is inside that fist, hidden behind those three fingers that are pointing at us.

Stepping out of that denial is not an easy thing. It makes us see ourselves for who we really are. It also finally addresses the issue that we need to work on, that’s true freedom!

So I just invite you to stop and think; every time there’s a situation in your life and you are ready to blame someone else; ask yourself, what part did you play for things to happen?

Be blessed

Did you enjoy this post? This is one of the lessons included in my book Growth Lessons , get your copy today! Do you already have the ebook and want my autograph…submit your request on kindlegraph and i’ll be honored to process it.

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A Call to the Body

I had already decided to stop the Stewardship series during Passover because I think there were more urgent things to discuss. Last year I decided to bring light into what the commercialized holiday had become and how we were engaging in a celebration that we didn’t even understand. If you want to review that just read Eggs and Bunnies by the cross.

This year I wanted to do a deep play by play study of what Jesus did for us and that we so much take for granted. I sometimes forget that I don’t run this thing and that I’m just a vehicle, so needless to say things have changed.

This weekend I heard this words, “Why with so many Christians in the world the job is not done?”

I think that as the body of Christ we forget exactly that …that we are the body. We are the hands and the feet that Jesus left on earth to do His work. In a way it goes back to the stewardship of our bodies, time and resources. If we claim to be the body of Christ how can we continue to be silent to so many injustices?

I also heard something this weekend that brought light into the lie. We have believed the lie that “poor little me” can’t do anything. I know I have bought into that one plenty of times. Really? So you can’t be the instrument that Almighty God can use to do mighty things? We need to stop putting limits to our unlimited God.

He came to save us and left us a mission “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” Matthew 28:19

How are you doing that? I know I have some thinking to do. Meditate on this song as you do…

PS. Thanks Christine Caine for your awakening and encouraging words.

Be blessed.

Casting Crowns

Sex Scandal in the Catholic Church

Church Sex scandals are a hot button topic these days and have maintained high visibility in the media recently.  I was moved to write this because I believe that the passion and intensity surrounding this issue has skewed a lot of people’s opinions and perspective and I believe that I can give a more balanced view on this issue.

It is terrible that as a people we have to be watchful even with those who we have been conditioned to trust, namely men and women who claim to come in the name of God. Sex scandals have not been exclusive to the Catholic Church, many preachers and pastors have fallen short of the grace and those things have become public. It is always disappointing.  I think part of the disappointment comes from forgetting these individuals are merely men and women. We have the tendency to elevate their position because of the part they play in our communities, social settings and the body of Christ. The reality is that yes, their responsibility is to lead and teach us about the Lord, but their humanity doesn’t leave with their calling.  Actually, as Christians we need to pray harder for our leaders because their attacks and strongholds are often as large as their calling.

I’ve heard people blaming celibacy for these events. I respectfully disagree. Priests and nuns know that this is a requirement of the commitment they have made. If sex was the driving force then priests having relations with Nuns or other secular adults would be just as, if not more, prevalent. The truth is pedophilia, rape, and sexual abuse is not sexually driven. They are driven by a deeper disturbance; it’s about control and power more than the sex itself.

 The other part where I respectfully disagree is where it has been commented that because it was male priests with male boys, that it was due to homosexuality. Homosexuality is not equal to pedophilia. Statistics show that the majority of sexual predators are heterosexual.

Now the thing that really bothers me about these cases is the way they have been handled. Whether the abuse was committed by clergy or the man down the street, the inequities in the handling of the situations are abhorrent. The fact that many of these priests were simply relocated to new communities, with no consequences or rehabilitation program, is ridiculous. On top of that, the new communities were not advised of the person’s past behavior. If the church wanted to take care of it internally, like the military handles issues that pertains to soldiers; I don’t have issue with that, however, relocating them to another community is unacceptable. Instead they should have been placed in some manner of recovery program and then reassigned to work in a position where they didn’t have access to children at all. Is that lack of forgiveness and mercy? No! That’s wisdom. Slapping their wrists and telling them to not do it anymore, without true rehabilitation, placing them back into the communities to do more damage, is irresponsible, dangerous and ultimately criminal.

It is hard for me to understand why servants of God would think that this would stay hidden forever?  The word of God says that “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account” (Hebrews 4:13 NIV) which means that nothing that they were doing was going to remain a secret.

I encourage you to pray for our religious leaders. They have a great responsibility and with it great lengths of attacks. I pray that they take the authority that has been given to them by their calling and correct appropriately those who have been entrusted to them.

I pray for those who have committed these terrible acts that they find themselves in true repentance before God. That they turn their hearts, make amends when possible and face accountability for their actions.

 I pray for the victims. I hope that their hearts continue to look to God for redemption and healing. God can restore anyone, and He can restore the souls of these who are suffering and their loved ones.  I encourage you to pray the same

Be blessed.

Inventory

This is the time of the year where we usually see where we are, what we have done and where we are headed. Things like losing weight, getting rid of a bad habit, reorganizing finances are at the tip of everyone’s tongue.

 I think those are good as long as you have a feasible, realistic plan to get them done. It’s also important to make sure that you have all the resources that you need to make them happen, including support and accountability. Yes, accountability, big, huge word. Do you trust yourself to do it on your own? I don’t. I promise myself I am going to do things all the time and they rarely get done. We all do better when someone is watching, that’s why accountability is so important.

In addition to that, are your goals in accordance with your purpose? We all have a purpose that has been set up by the Creator. Are your current goals in alignment with that or are they all about you?

This is the week when we usually take inventory of our lives. That is usually a good thing anyway. Make a difference this year. Make this year different than all the others.  Here are some suggestions:

  • Make sure that you include forgiveness in the list. No better way to lose some weight than to let those heavy burdens go.
  • Include yourself in the forgiveness list. Sometimes, we have already apologized and even prayed for forgiveness, but we’re still carrying the guilt and the shame. It’s time to let it go!
  • Include others in your plans. Like I said before accountability, guidance and support are going to help you achieve your goals.
  • Try to include something service related. It will keep you balanced.
  • Make sure that your goals are balanced in time and effort.
  • Have a blessed 2010!!!

 Naty

*the image was found online if anyone needs credit for it, please page me*