The Most Dangerous Belief! (A Rant)

I couldn’t believe what I was reading…

While strolling my local Borders bookstore recently, I flipped through a copy of Jim Wallis’ book:

The Great Awakening: Reviving Faith and Politics in a Post-Religious Right America

I’m not going to link to the book… because I’m not recommending you buy it.

Now don’t tune me out! This is not a rant about religion or politics (we can have that discussion, or a series of discussions, some other time).

Instead, it’s about belief.

    What we believe about ourselves and our place in the world.

In his book, Wallis made the point that in the United States, if you work hard, you shouldn’t be poor. He then went on to champion certain political policies to address the problem.

Three questions:

  • Who defines work?
  • Who defines hard?
  • Who defines poor?

At some level, we can all agree with his comment. I mean, who is really “for” poverty, anyway?

No sane person likes to see other people suffer.

The problem is this…

There’s an unstated assumption behind Wallis’ statement:

Someone else is to blame for my problems. I am a victim. I am not responsible for my place in life.

Do the above statements describe you and your belief? If they do, I sense danger! And you should too.

If you’re unhappy with your circumstances, look in the mirror and blame the person you see first. 🙂

Others may have contributed to your problems, but you are the driver of your life.

BUT THERE’S GOOD NEWS TOO!

You also have the power to change! No one cares about your life more than you do. You can bring about the results you desire, if your belief is strong enough.

Those who tell you “it’s not your fault” are lying to you, and even worse, their ideas will keep you from making meaningful progress.

After all, if “it’s not my fault”, then I don’t have to change.

But if I take responsibility for my decisions and actions, there’s hope. And I’ll be in the best position to seek out help in overcoming my obstacles.

See, we all need help! “No man is an island”, sayeth the poet John Donne.

The question I have is: are you looking for help in solving specific problems, or are you looking for someone else to solve ALL of your problems?

If you choose the latter, it’s probably “safer”. And you’d be in good company. And you’d have someone else to blame if things don’t work out.

If you’re looking to target blame on someone, there are many options to choose from. Take your pick. Your friends, ex-wife, parents, employer, or even the government. You’ll always have an “out”.

ON THE OTHER HAND…

If you’re ready to stop being a “victim”, there are plenty of people who are willing to help you.

Look, I can’t change the world… but I can help and encourage a few people along the way.

If this post resonates with you, please leave a comment below and let me know. Or if it just makes you really mad, you can let me know that as well.

Just know that as my reader, I care about you and want you to achieve whatever you want in life.

3 Comments:
  1. I agree Darrel! Nice rant- I grow very weary of the victim-mentality. It seems common-place in our post-modern culture, for sure. I know that I myself was wallowing in the victim-state until just recently, when my husband and I are learning to take responsibility for our own stuff.

  2. The victim mentality is in all of us somewhat inately I think. We want to be taken care of otherwise Heaven wouldn’t sound so good. But as they say this isn’t Heaven on earth… So I think when we grow up and start taking care of ourselves we also take on the responsibility of taking care of those who can’t do it for themselves. I think that voluntary charity is the best way. Bad charities don’t get donations if they don’t manage well but well managed once attract more donors. In a perfect world, eh? Well, we can always wait for Heaven!

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