Tuesday, January 24, 2017

blame it on the....

St Augustine gives us more wisdom today in A Year with the Church Fathers.

He tells us that we don't usually accept blame for our actions, but try to pass the buck. And we see that running rampant, don't we? We CAN take comfort in the fact that the very first humans did the same thing... it's nothing new. But we can rise above it. Can't we?

Whether it's Calvin blaming fate, Milli Vanilli blaming it on the rain, or Jamie Foxx blaming it on the alcohol... we all try to find someone else to point to when the accusations start.

Now, let's take a step back. Who is the accuser? We're told that Satan is the accuser. So when the accusations start flying, keep in mind that accusing people is something our ancient enemy delights in... that might make it easier for you to remember not to pass the buck, but to take responsibility for your actions.

So does that mean that God never accuses us? Well, what I've found is that the little voice in my head that says "You did this terrible thing and therefore you're a horrible person" is not God. That's the accuser. What God does is He says, "I love you." And He shows me all of the amazing, wonderful things that He has done in my life, and in the world. And then... gently, carefully, kindly, with only the very best intentions, He calls to mind the ways in which I've hurt my relationship with Him through my sins. And when He does, there is no "you're a horrible person". There is only love, and a desire to change to be more like Him.

So next time the accusations come, take a step back, take a deep breath, and accept that you're not perfect, you make mistakes, and that's OK. And don't pass the buck to someone else.

Ask for the grace and peace to accept the blame, ask for forgiveness, and grow from the experience.

God, thank You for Your forgiveness, without which we would be entirely lost.