Tuesday, March 24, 2009

excuse making

Related to the post on repentance, yesterday, I think we humans, and in particular we Christians can be very good, and creative at making excuses for either not doing what we should do, or doing what we shouldn't do.

Yesterday I was quite tired at work, and part of the time for me, the work was hectic. Even when not, I really felt out of sorts, being as tired as I was from having finished a project the night before, too long into the wee morning hours.

Then I remembered how Paul mentioned his sleepless nights. I remembered too how I don't believe in coddling myself or indulging in self-pity. As I worked through that the Lord seemed to help me, and I began to pray for others. And the Lord seemed to give me peace and a conscious sense of his help much of the rest of the day.

I got home, had a nice visit with Deb, ate while we watched the news, was reading a book before enough was enough, and I was sound asleep for a few hours. I know we have to have a balance in taking care of ourselves, and how not getting enough sleep can make us more susceptible to feeling bad. As humans we must have sufficient sleep.

Just the same, I think we're good at making excuses for sin. Sometimes bad theology or unsound and at least questionable interpretation of Scripture helps us excuse ourselves, as well.

The call here is simply to remind us that while we can't follow Christ on our own, and are in need of grace at every turn and in every moment, we need to learn to cast excuse making aside. We need to recognize it for what it is, a lack of faith in God and in God's word in Jesus.

Maybe this thought can help me uncover other areas of my life which need addressed. Of course we need our Guide, the Spirit. We can't do it ourselves. And we need to do so as those humbly in community with God's people. With the goal toward mission and fulfilling of our calling through Jesus our Lord.

What would you like to add to this?

8 comments:

Lanny said...

Ahh you're speaking to the queen of rationalization and justification! ouch

nAncY said...

oh, what a tangled web we weave
what a tangled web
when first we practice to deceive
our self
we lose our head



i agree, we humans are so easily
distracted by all kinds of
not-so-good ideas.

Allan R. Bevere said...

Ted:

Many years ago I heard a pastor say that excuses are rationalizations that sound good only to the one making the excuse, and then many times, not even the one making the excuse really believes what he or she is saying.

Kurt Willems said...

When we begin to rationalize towards compromise, we have usually already made our decision. I once heard John Maxwell say: "we need to know our convictions ahead of time... then everyday we manage those decisions." What he was saying is that if we know our convictions before temptation comes, then we can be better prepared to manage those situations with integrity rather than compromise... I only wish that this principle was as easy to implement as it is to explain :-)

Ted M. Gossard said...

Lanny,
Maybe I don't see myself that way, yet I've caught myself doing the same more times than I would imagine.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Nancy,
Your point is a good one! Yes, sin is against truth and therefore brings trouble with its lies and deception. Sin is certainly deceitful by nature.

And thanks for your poem!!

Ted M. Gossard said...

Allan,
That makes sense. To really want truth, and truth in the inmost place, and to search for it would be antithetical to defending ourselves and our actions by excuse making.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Kurt,
Thanks. Yes, we must be committed to God through Christ, a commitment that is nothing less than what God has called us to. That pretty much will take care of how we end up handing by grace, whatever comes our way.