Deep inside in all of us, we have this intrinsic desire to make our life matter. We want to be known as the one who made his best for himself, for his family, and for the faith he believe in. Who doesn’t want to succeed, a life invested on the most important things in life? We want to make things happen. We desire to truly live a life, a life counted.

As children, we’re brimming with imagination. Our mind plays with limitless enthusiasm and excitement never leaves us, we’re always looking to participate in this nice existence.

With all the cute positive quotations we have, we embarked expecting positive outcomes. But life doesn’t goes in our way all the time: something didn’t work, you didn’t pass, you received the papers with red marks. You flunked. The plan was flawed. You blew it.

We experienced this irritating feeling called disappointment. We know the formula, but it’s not working. We found out that real life is not wholly written in fairy tale’s ink. In disgust, we discovered that life doesn’t care about fairness. Bad things happen to good people. Good things happen to bad people. And that’s irritating.

At first, we don’t have clue how to respond to this feeling of failure and inadequacy, so we look outward for some model. But then we saw one of the worst habit of our society, nine out of ten people are participating in this miserable game – the blame game.

You saw how adults handle their disappointments or anything that is wrong in their lives, they point out their finger, away from them and toward the other party. “It’s not my fault. It.Is.Yours!”

“Maybe, just maybe, I’m not responsible for this,” you whispered. Maybe, the sticky negatives in your life is not your responsibility. It is outside you, the circumstances, your family, your society, your destiny and or God are the ones responsible. They must straighten themselves first in order for you to regain happiness.

  • You didn't passed the exam. Your teacher is lousy. 
  • You didn't win the basketball game. The other team didn't play fair. Or the referee is an airhead. 
  • You’re living from paycheck to paycheck and there’s too much month left for your money. The company don’t pay enough. 
  • The intimacy in your marriage is as hot as cold water. Your husband doesn't know how to prioritize life and work. 
  • You cannot get any job done. Microsoft Windows is a piece of crap (If only you can afford a shiny MacBook Pro…). 
  • You’re late on finishing the project. Your coworker’s mouth (and face) sapped your concentration. 
  • You’re fat. McDonald’s is the one to blame. 
We’re seduced to embrace a lifetime major in fault-finding. Sadly, many people never realized that they can drop out of this school of irresponsibility. They arrived in the grave, unable to think and move, numbed and dead, blamed life and other faces for his plight. That kind of man deserves the most pity.

The Genesis of Irresponsibility

In the Bible, there’s a story about the first man and woman on how they started the most damaging and exhausting game in history. Adam and Eve were trusted by God to take care of the Garden of Eden and the animals living on it. They are implored to be responsible, anything is allowed except for one – they cannot eat fruit from the Tree-of-Knowledge-of-Good-and-Evil. I believe they nodded happily. That’s easy, anything but one? That’s a no-brainer.

But then the slippery serpent came and made a pitch for Eve. Poor Eve, she was easily tempted and gave in. She took the first juicy bite. She even pushed the share button and gave some to her husband. Then lo and behold, they found that they are fully ready for a seductive photo shoot! They frantically ran to the bushes and sewed the first fashion of humanity – makeshift clothes made of itchy leaves.

And when God strolled in the garden, they hid in the trees like rabbits. “Where are you?” God asked.

They know that they can’t lie to God, He’s God! So they ashamedly opened their situation. God probed who’s responsible for the violation.

And then Adam made the first brave stand, mustered all of his manliness and confessed, “I’m the one responsible for this disobedience. It’s my fault, please don’t punish my lovely wife for this. Here I am, I’m taking all of your righteous anger Father God!”

If that’s what Adam did, I believe majority would live a more responsible life following his example. But that’s not what really happened.

The first man gulped all of the air he can get and blurted out, “THE WOMMMMAAAAAANNNN! That human being you gave me as companion, she’s not living her role! She’s a tempter! She’s the one who gave me the fruit!”

Then God asked Eve. She blame the snake. Then the rest is history, thousand years after, we’re still participating in the longest running game in existence.

But we’re more sophisticated in the game now. We blame the weather, the cellular network, the diaper maker, the pop star, the government, the developer of the app, the interim teacher, our husband, the dog, and even the God of the Bible for our misery. Anything and anyone, except the person in the mirror.

But we need to face the lurking truth that we can’t deny.

Irresponsibility doesn't work!

Nobody will bother to consider your recommendations. We all have polished ego, and listening to other mouth tell us about how to do our life would never be in our to-do list. “I am a first class human specimen, so why I would listen to lesser humans? I’m the one who can teach and point out all of your bugs!”

The problem is, almost everyone are thinking in the same way! With that, no wonder much of our society is in mess and idiotic chaos. We’re too proud to accept it, but if we speak with honesty, we would say that we’re desperate for people who would take responsibility for their own mess and would exemplify a mature perspective on life.

And I firmly believe that you can be that person.

Thousands of researcher and writer searched for the common denominator of successful people, the ones who are living with genuine smile and not a phony one. People who are effective in business, arts and faith. These people really deserve to be praised, but they are ever humble and always acknowledging other people.

What’s their common denominator?

Family?

No. Some had nurturing families, some were abandoned, neglected or even abused by their very own parents. 
 

Wealth?

No. Some are born with all the luxuries, some grew up always worrying for their next food.

Education?

No. Some had Ph.D.’s while others didn’t even bother to go to college. Successful drop-outs are everywhere!

Religion?

No. Some believe in Jesus, some in Budhha, some in Alah, and some are furiously irritated to all of three. 

They are Responsible

They are the people who accepted that the only person that they change is themselves. And once they accepted this truth, they found liberation! Freedom from the exhausting sport of criticism. Freedom from the hopeless change-the-whole-world-without-changing-me mission.

Every day, they choose to take charge in spite of culture’s cheer to blame everybody else. They dare greatly and do the best they can with the life they received.

Jesus once told a parable that touches this issue. In the parable, three men were given bags of gold to invest. The one received five bags, the other received three, and the last received one.

After a long absence, the master returned to settle accounts. The one who had given five bags of gold doubled the initial investment, as well as the one who received three bags. The master was very happy and he commended them.

But the man who received one bag of gold, too afraid to take responsibility, just dug a hole and buried his master’s money. As a result, the one bag remained one. And the reason for his play-it-safe approach? “Master, I knew that you’re a hard man…”

He shifted the blame for his mediocre result. His master was rightly furious. “That’s a terrible way to live! It’s criminal to live cautiously like that! If you knew I was after the best, why did you do less than the least?”

Even you don’t believe in Jesus, you can get a priceless insight from that parable – we’re here to live courageously, nurture our gifts and use them for greater good. We’re here to dare greatly.

Elizabeth Smart

Elizabeth Smart was a sweet 14 year old who loves to play the harp. She belongs to a nurturing family, a family who takes religion seriously. She grew up in a Sunday school and learned about a loving God who gives life mission to his beloved children.

She prayed heartily for a mission. She wants to serve her God. But she never expected what would happen days after.

On the cool night of June 5, 2002, she was abducted.

She was taken by a crazy self-proclaimed “prophet” named Brian David Mitchell. The prophet believed that he’s the chosen one of God, a messiah that would redeemed the world from its corruption. But first, he has to take seven virgin wife to complete the ritual. Unfortunately, Elizabeth was the first chosen.

It is unfair.

For nine months, Elizabeth was abused verbally and sexually. She was raped not one, not two, but three to four times a day. She was chewed like a gum by a man who believed that what he’s doing is the will of God, and she must be grateful for it.

Elizabeth was devastated to the core. She felt worthless and came to the point believing that nobody would ever love her again. Is this the mission that God has chosen for her? She never imagined that this kind of humiliation is even possible. She never imagined that there’s something that is worse than death.

She was rescued on March 12, 2003, from the company of Brian and his wife, Wanda Illeen Barzee. After almost a year of captivity, she was redeemed, finally home. But with all the crime done to her, could she live whole again?

She did.

She was transformed from a helpless victim to a face of courage and to a firm believer that everyone has sacred worth that can’t be destroyed even by the most inhuman abuse. She became an activist against sexual exploitation. In 2011, she founded the Elizabeth Smart Foundation, a movement that educates children about their self-worth and fights against sexual crime in real and online world.

She’s a woman repeatedly tarnished by a demon in human body. She experienced the unfairness of life in full-dose and it almost left her hopeless. But she choose to stay in the game of life and be an encouragement to those who also experienced abuse.

Maybe she blame other elements at first, when the wounds were still red, but she didn’t let herself to become a victim for the rest of her life. She choose to be a victor. Not bitter, but better.

So can you.



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