I’m from Indiana, and the debate is still open as to where the term “Hoosier” comes from. No matter, since for more than a couple of decades we have lived in the “Show Me” state of Missouri, a mindset which suits me fairly well.
It’s not that I choose to be somewhat skeptical; it just comes naturally.
One of the other things that Missouri has going for its reputation is Harry S. Truman. This famous photograph is also something I can relate to:
That’s just one of many things I love about Harry. And I’m not even a Democrat.
The opposite was true about our first parents (not that they were Democrats, either.) Adam was probably pretty content hanging out in Eden, until some snake decided to have a chat with the poor man’s gardening counterpart, Eve. Interestingly, one of the first sins after the forbidden fruit was the institution of “passing the buck”, blaming someone else for my failure rather than taking responsibility for my own actions, ie, victimhood. The Almighty’s kids even went so far as to blame God Himself! (Of course, we would have never done that.) The recorded conversation sounds like something I’d hear at my middle school:
“…the Lord God asked. ‘Have you eaten from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat?’ The man replied, ‘It was the woman you gave me who gave me the fruit, and I ate it.’ Then the Lord God asked the woman, ‘What have you done?’ ‘The serpent deceived me,’ she replied. ‘That’s why I ate it.’”
Now, all of these excuses had some element of truth in them. Bottom line, they didn’t believe their Creator enough to manage their behavioral decisions, i.e., obedience, even in the face of questions and desires.
And if one of the first sins was the blaming game, then interestingly one of the first steps in becoming a Christian is to own up to my sin. It’s mine, period. Jesus can’t take something away from me unless it’s mine to begin with—He wants to take my sin, and my sin nature, but I have to recognize it as mine before I can give to Him. Regardless of my past experiences, my decisions are mine alone. Jesus has not given me any other option, because in a very real sense, there are no victims in God’s family.
“By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence.”
Once I allow the buck to stop with me, only then can God make it disappear.
Genesis 3:11-13; 2 Peter 1:3 Bible. New Living Translation copyright© 1996, 2004, 2007, 2013 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved