Root Out Those ‘Lame Excuses’

1 Feb

“Ready to move to the next stage where I stop the procrastination and start developing some really good excuses.” ~ comedian and author, Rhonda Rhea

StopMakingExcuses

I (Dawn) had to laugh about these Five Maxims of Making Excuses. *

(1) The feebleness or banality of an excuse should never be a deterrent to its use.

(2) Always put the blame on something that can’t defend itself. (Children, pets, inanimate objects, and relatives living in foreign countries make perfect scapegoats.)

(3) Whine convincingly.

(4) Certain ailments work better than others. No doctor or machine in the wold can prove that you don’t have that headache.

(5) Try to remember tht nature allotted each of us only two grandmothers to attend funerals for.  (HA!)

Seriously now … you aren’t really thinking of using those maxims, are you?

What are some excuses people use in everyday life?

  • You never told me I couldn’t do that.
  • That’s not my department.
  • I have jet lag (I have used this one many times!)
  • The Devil made me do it.
  • The drugs made me do it.
  • Everybody else does it.
  • I’d really like to, but my gerbils are having babies tonight. (OK, that’s not an “everyday” excuse.)

In LOL with God, I wrote about a time, as a young pastor’s wife, I counseled a Christian woman who had “a long list of excuses for her behavior and bad choices.”  I challenged her that she might have a lot of reasons for her choices (maybe even some good ones), but they still weren’t excuses, because the indwelling Holy Spirit can empower us to make right choices and do what is right.

Thankfully, she got the difference. Whenever we make an excuse about sinful or unwise behavior, we are choosing not to do what we know is right. There may be hundreds of reasons for bad behavior, but God wants us to own up to those reasons and recognize most of them for what they are ~ lame excuses. I say “lame,” because God wants to help us make wise decisions of victory and fruitfulness. He has the power to help and change us.

But we have to be willing for Him to work. We have to cooperate when the Spirit points to an excuse. We have to repent. Repentance is a matter of turning completely around from our sin and going the opposite direction toward righteousness (1 John 1:8-9).

When God first called me to speak, I (like Moses, Exodus 4:10) said I couldn’t speak because of a speech impediment. It was my reason not to obey God. But the root, really, was fear of man. What would people think? Once I realized that my reason was really an ungodly excuse, I repented and moved forward in obedience. And you know, God took care of my problem! But even if He hadn’t, I learned the joy of obedience.

But maybe it’s not a matter of overt sin. Maybe it’s just foolishness instead of wisdom. But the Bible still has an answer for that, too. Everything is permissible, Paul said, but everything isn’t the best ~ maybe not the most constructive, life-building choice we can make (see 1 Corinthians 10:23).

When we make excuses, we block an area of spiritual growth. Maybe we justify laziness, and say,  “That’s just the way I am.” Maybe we blame others with our excuses, when really, we still do have a choice. It’s worthwhile to examine our reasons for doing things ~ reasons for not progressing or moving forward, for avoiding something, for failing to try, etc. ~ and see if they are really just excuses and an unwilling heart.

God wants us to discern the roots of the behaviors in our lives and receive godly wisdom and advice (Proverbs 1:5; 12:15).  He weighs the intentions of our hearts (Proverbs 21:2), and that includes the things we choose not to do for all the wrong reasons.

So, what’s your excuse? Give it to God and watch Him work.

* http://oldnewjokes.com/five-maxims-of-making-excuses/

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