Blame Game or Wise Choice
"So he [the business owner] called him and said to him, 'What is this I hear about you? Give an account of your stewardship, for you can no longer be steward.'"1
"Two young boys were raised in the home of an alcoholic father. As young men, they each went their own way. Years later a psychologist who was analyzing what drunkenness does to children in the home searched out these two men. One had turned out to be like his father, a hopeless alcoholic. The other had turned out to be a teetotaler.
"The counselor asked the first man, 'Why did you become an alcoholic?' He asked the second, 'Why did you become a teetotaler?'
"They both gave the same identical answer in these words, 'What else could you expect when you had a father like mine?' It's not what happens to us in life but how we react to it that makes the difference. Every human being in the same situation has the possibilities of choosing how he will react, either positively or negatively."2
It is true that children who grow up in a warm, loving, and caring family atmosphere are given a much greater start in life. However, there is no guarantee that they will become model citizens. They, too, like the rest of us, either consciously or unconsciously, make the choice in how they are going to live their life.
If we grew up in a less than desirable home atmosphere, we can choose to feel sorry for ourselves, play the blame game, and limp along in the shadows of life without a goal or purpose—and waste our life. Or, if we so desire, like President Ronald Reagan whom I understand also had an alcoholic father, we can choose to make something worthwhile with our life, grow through our difficulties, and with God's help become the person God envisions for us to be, and, in so doing, invest our life in a worthwhile cause and noble purpose. The choice is ours.
I realize that it can be very difficult to honor a mother or father who is an alcoholic, an abuser, or an abandoning parent. However, I believe the greatest way we can honor such a parent is not to allow our past to determine our future. What an honor it would be for all of us parents should our children rise above their early setbacks to invest their lives wisely in doing good for others.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to overcome any and all setbacks I may have had in the past, and choose—with your help—to invest my life wisely so that, when I give an account of my life before you, I will hear your welcoming words, 'Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of your Lord.' Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."
1. Luke 16:2 (NKJV).
2. From The West Side Baptist. Cited on www.sermons.com.