Tuesday, April 27, 2010
I recently saw a T-shirt that had the following printed on it:
I didn't say that it was your fault,
I said that I was going to blame you!
Very cute and funny until I got to thinking about it. Then I started thinking about scape goats.
Originally, scape goats were the ones on which Aaron was instructed, in Leviticus, to confess the sins of the people over. In other words, he was to symbolically place those sins onto the goat which was then driven out into the wilderness. The goat was made to bear the blame or guilt of the sins of the people.
Nowadays, we still have scapegoats in our society whether we realize it or acknowledge it. No doubt you have some in your life. These are the people whom we blame for all of our problems or troubles. Those we credit with the things that go wrong in our lives. All too often however these problems are of our own making and we are not willing to take responsibility for our own actions and choices.
In families there is usually one or two people who have been in this role for years. They fell into this role because of dysfunctional dynamics in their childhood family. There are four such roles that family members fall into and these often carry on into adulthood. Sometimes family members play multiple roles.
The hero role is taken up to try and solve the problems in the short-term, by deflating the situation feeling that the issue has been dealt with. In reality the problem will probably still exist and the heroes will constantly find themselves fighting against it, taking on needless responsibility and feelings of inadequacy.
The scapegoat believes that they are the cause of the problem(s) and develop complex defence mechanisms to combat these feelings, they may shun personal relationships, rebel against perceived threats including family and adopt feelings of guilt and shame.
The lost child prefers to ignore the immediate situation and withdraw into a safe personal world in which no one can disturb them, isolating themselves from meaningful relationships.
The mascot becomes a distraction, often apt at social situations and entertaining they prevent people from focusing upon the problem believing that it will solve itself rather than deal with painful tasks.
More than anything else, if you know that you are following one of these roles or if you know of someone else who is following one of these roles then you need to get yourself or that person help. We must identify and acknowledge that these problems do indeed exist and do everything that we can to remedy the situation. If you are someone who is using someone else as a scapegoat then you also need to get help to become able to take responsibility for yourself, your actions, your choices.
Do not believe that being a Christian means that you do not need help. Do not believe that having enough faith will make you miraculously better. These are fairy tales that those who do not know any better tell others. Yes, Christ still does perform miracles each and every day but he has also made other provisions for us as well and expects us to have the wisdom to make use of them.
Christ was the great counselor, the wonderful counselor, so He must have believed in counseling. He must have believed in the art of counseling. He spent great lengths of time speaking with his followers. Helping them to understand themselves, the world and how things worked. Teaching them in all kinds of ways. Do not believe for one moment that he did not speak with them on a personal level, for he loved them and was very close to them. And God has provided the wisdom to man for us to help one another. Take advantage of it.
One last thing about scapegoats. Christ took away the need for them when he died on the cross. He became the scapegoat for all people, for all time. There is no longer a need to place the blame or guilt for anything on anyone else for Christ has already paid the price. One must simply confess their wrongs to him and ask for forgiveness. How much simpler could it be? Why hurt the anyone else when things can be resolved so easily? It only takes owning up to your own responsibility and saying you are sorry to the Lord.
Sunday, April 25, 2010
I was raised believing in miracles. In fact I am a miracle as I was born with a congenital defect in my heart. My understanding is that the doctors told my parents that I wouldn't leave the hospital because of it, yet, here I am today, almost 53 years later. But I also believe in medicine and I believe that the knowledge we have today that allows doctors to do the things that they do came directly from God for the Bible tells us in Proverbs 2:6 For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding.
I believe that we are to have faith for both miracles and medicine and that in many ways medicine is a miracle. If we would stop and look back 25, 50, 100 years ago we would realize how very far we have come. There are so very many things available to us today that were not available just a short time ago. If we look back even farther we will be astonished by the advances that have been made just since the birth of our country.
Yet, even so, let us not take any of this for granted. We must always remember from whom all healing, all good things come. Today, many physicians have developed an attitude of superiority. They seem to think too highly of themselves.
Just recently I had a doctor tell me that all the doctors prior to him had "misinformed" me concerning a particular ailment that I have suffered from 3 or 4times a year for most of my life. I have lived in a couple of foreign countries, on military bases and all over the United States. I have seen many doctors, including general practioners and several specialist in the area of this particular malady. And many of them have told me the exact same thing regarding my problem. Many of these doctors I have seen for years at a stretch. Yet this doctor, whom I have seen perhaps a half dozen times in all and who would not even bother to see me the only time I came down with this condition since he has been my doctor, presumes to tell me that he is going to "set me straight" concerning my problem. He allowed me to remain sick for over 3 weeks, doing nothing and then claimed that he must have done the "right" thing. I however do not give him credit for my recovery at all. I spent those weeks in bed praying, asking God to prevent the enemy from taking this doctors ineptness and using it to cause me more severe illness, possibly death. It is to my Father that I give thanks for my recovery.
I don't know about everyone else, but since I have dealt with my body for almost 53 years I figure that I have more experience with it than most doctors have experience at doctoring. Granted they have dedicated the time and effort to get the education that makes them a doctor but they will never know me and my body as well as I do. I make every effort to be respectful of them and their knowledge but I also expect them to be respectful of me and mine.
At any rate, this doctor got irratated with me because I wouldn't allow him to "set me straight". Seems I was wasting his time and he was a busy man. So I dismissed him. Last time I checked there was only one being who was omniscient and His residence was in Heaven, not Texas. I continue to look to Him in faith for my healing. Whether He chooses to send it by miracle or by medicine, I will gladly accept it and praise Him for it. Should he choose not to send it at all that too I will accept.
I have, in the past several years, run into several situations where folks fabricating has greatly affected my life. Just in case you are wondering, fabricating is my way of nicely saying that someone is telling falsehoods.
Someone I know used to say quite often of someone they knew, "She would rather climb a tree and tell a lie than to stand on the ground and tell the truth." In other words, someone would go to great lengths, a great deal of time and trouble to speak a falsehood rather than to tell the truth. I too have found this to be so of some people.
Oftentimes this is so when in reality nothing need be said at all. People will make up these stories about others just for the sake of causing them trouble, making them look bad, causing friction between them and someone else. It is not in any way for the purpose of getting themselves out of some fix they have gotten themselves into, as children tend to do.
Another thing about it is that these fabrictions are often so flimsy that if the people to whom they are being told would really listen to them they would not only be insulted by the fact that they are being lied to but by the fact that they are thought to be so gullable and ignorant.
For instance, one of the tales told on me recently concerned a pet that belongs to a neighbor of mine. This neighbor was in the hospital and the pet would come to visit me to keep from being alone. Another person was seeing to it that the pet was being fed and watered. This person told it around that I was keeping the pet locked up so that it couldn't get to the food and water they were putting out which was untrue. Then they proceeded to say that they were unable to tend to the animal if they didn't have access to it.
Did you catch that?
I have had a lot of pets in my lifetime. Never have I found it necessary for the animal to be present in order to put food and water out for it. This pets food and water dish always remains in the same area. To my knowledge it has never had any difficulty in finding them.
Another type of fabrication that I have run into lately that has caused me a good deal of trouble is what I call a half truth. Back in August someone almost broke my nose when they shoved some papers in my face in anger. No one saw what happened and this person told everyone that they "didn't touch me!"
In reality this is a true statement because what actually touched my face was the papers this person had in their hand. This does not change the fact that the heel of their hand on the other side of those papers forcing those papers violently toward my face injured me. This is like someone who hits another person with a car saying they didn't touch them, the car did, or someone beating someone with a bat saying they didn't touch them, the bat did. It doesn't make them innocent of their actions. In this case, they are acting like a child, telling a partial truth in order to save themselves from the consequences of their actions.
Either way, these fabrications, when believed by those they are told to, cause a great deal of hurt and heartache for those they are told on. The innocent victim of them must suffer needlessly because some person is too immature to deal with reality or accept the resposibility for themselves and their choices.
There are those who seem to have a penchant for fabrications, a compulsion to live in a fantasy world of their own making. Perhaps it is an illness of some sort. It is difficult for me to understand why folks persist in associating with someone who has proven themselves incapable of being honest with them.
Look closely at the picture. Is it a picture of a man? Or is it the word Liar?