Eternal Perspectives: What Excuses Do We Make?
WHAT EXCUSES DO WE MAKE?
Let’s face it, we all make excuses. And we all know better. This New Year is our opportunity to start a new beginning with no more excuses. By doing so, we will bless the Lord and He will bless us.
Eternal Perspectives by Sally Bair
Have you made your New Year’s resolutions yet? Are they doable? Or like most of us, will we break them after the first week?
What are some of the excuses we use? It’s too hot, cold, or windy to take a walk. We’re too busy, too old or young, or too fearful. Sometimes I think that even animals use excuses for avoiding things. Not the squirrels, birds, and moles, however. Nothing stops them from going after the corn feast offered to them every day.
It’s easy to find excuses for avoiding what we know we should do. Are we reluctant to make life changes? To upset the status quo? Perhaps to lose our comfortable lifestyle?
Old Testament Jonah was reluctant to change things. Called by God to go to the evil city of Ninevah, he ran away. Another example is of ten Israelite spies sent to check out the Promised Land. They returned with the excuse that the people there were “like giants,” too big to defeat, in spite of God’s former miracles of deliverance. Peter, out of fear before Jesus’ crucifixion, denied he even knew his Lord.
Some of us also excuse ourselves for not following God. The church is full of hypocrites, people say. But why excuse ourselves by judging a whole group by the actions or words of a few? Some won’t read God’s Word because they believe it’s archaic or harsh. Some read it to find other peoples’ faults, refusing to face their own.
In Luke 14, Jesus tells about people invited to a special meal. Each one made an excuse. Like them, sometimes we consider our own affairs as more important than God’s.
God proves His sovereign love for us every day, yet some choose not to believe. “Ever since God created the world, His invisible qualities … have been clearly seen. Men can perceive them in the things that God has made. So they have no excuse at all! They know God, but they do not give Him the honor that belongs to Him, nor do they thank Him. Instead, their thoughts have become complete nonsense and their empty minds are filled with darkness.” (Romans 1:20-23, Today’s English Version)
Yet the Bible shows many examples of people who did not give excuses to God. Abraham, Joseph, Rahab, Paul, Job, and others forged ahead to follow God’s will regardless of negative circumstances. They trusted Him enough to know He would bless them.
Lord, forgive us when we use excuses, refusing to follow Your will. Help us, rather, to trust in You totally, through Your Word and Spirit. In Jesus’ name, amen.