Topic:The Habit of Being Responsible
Ninety-nine percent of all failure comes from people who have a habit of making excuses.
George Washington Carver
Making excuses each time we are faced with taking responsibility for some action or lack of action is a very bad habit. It can easily derail our life and will likely prevent
success. If we take responsibility for our lives, it can often be a shocking experience, because suddenly we have no one to
blame. Jesus said that many are called and few are chosen (Matthew 20:16). I think that may mean that although many
are called to do great things for God, few are willing to take the responsibility for their call. Being responsible is what makes us honorable people. It is the price of greatness, according to Sir Winston Churchill.
Excuses are nothing new. They have been used by humans to avoid responsibility since time began. After Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden, they both made excuses when confronted by God.
They both blamed others. Adam blamed Eve and God for giving him Eve, and Eve blamed the devil. People make excuses for their sins all the time instead of
simply admitting them, confessing them, and asking God to forgive them.
Taking full responsibility for our actions is
possibly one of the most emotionally painful things that we face in life. We desperately want to think we are good, and we feel that to fully admit we have made a mistake and not done what we should have done spoils our goodness.
We all have things to face about ourselves, and it is a brave man or woman who is
willing to do it. We should never be afraid to admit that we are wrong about something or that we have made a mistake. The truth is what sets us free (John 8:32). Avoiding, evading, and making excuses keeps us in bondage.
Because the truth makes us free, our enemy the devil will fill our heads with excuses and ways to blame other people and things for our shortcomings. He knows that we will remain trapped in our problems if we refuse to take responsibility for
Take the example of being late. When people are late for an appointment or for work they rarely simply say, “I’m sorry I
am late. I didn’t manage my time well and I didn’t leave my house when I should have.” Instead we say things like, “I’m late because I got caught in traffic. I didn’t know I needed to get gasoline. My kids were being impossible and my husband
misplaced my car keys.” That may well be true occasionally, but when it happens all the time, there is a definite problem that
needs to be addressed.
Even if some of those things did happen, it was still our responsibility to leave early enough to accommodate for traffic, to make sure we had gasoline or time
to get it, and to manage our households well enough to avoid
the other issues.
Did you know that when you’re late, you are sending the message that your time is more valuable than the person’s who
is waiting for you? At the very least, call that person and tell her you’re running late and when you expect to arrive. That is
Making an excuse for being late is minor compared to all the excuses that people make for an endless list of things. But
excuses are never pleasing to God because He loves the truth and wants us to love it too. Making excuses can easily fall into
the category of lies, and that causes us to break the commandment “Thou shalt not lie.”
When we make excuses we are actually lying to ourselves as well as others. We are keeping ourselves in deception
through reasoning. We can easily find a reason for every error, but it is better to simply take responsibility for our actions.
There are, of course, reasons why things happen, and sharing those reasons is not always a problem unless we are
using them as an excuse to not change. I love it when I hear someone say, “I take full responsibility for that mistake.” It
immediately causes me to respect and trust them.