Archive for the ‘accidents’ Tag

Taking Ownership   1 comment

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I am not sure if this is a fairly recent phenomenon or if it can be traced back through the centuries but one disturbing reality which I encounter on a regular basis is a lack of individuals taking ownership for their actions.  I find people frequently looking for someone to blame for situations in their lives but failing to look at how they may have been party to what has occurred.  How is it that we seem to have become a society that lives by the words, “It’s not my fault!”?

There are definitely situations in which an individual or group of individuals have done nothing to create or cause.  Life is full of accidents, mistakes, and misunderstandings.  However, I find that too many people want to place blame without ever doing a little self-examination.  Each one of us has the capacity to do beneficial and meaningful actions.  Each one of us has the capacity to inflict hardship and pain on others.  Each one of us has the capacity to make mistakes.  When we do make a mistake or cause difficulty in another person’s life, we need to admit to it and try to rectify the situation as we are capable.

I find it much easier to be understanding and forgive if someone is willing to admit her/his mistake.  Many times the person did what seemed right at that time.  There are times when we all are in the midst of a stressful situation and we say something which we regret.  Each of has times when we forget or fail to follow through.  Everyone has moments when they error.  The key for me is what we do when those situations arise.  Does the person take ownership or does the person come up with excuses and seek someone else to blame?


Making Sense of It   1 comment

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Recently there has been another rash of murders, attacks, and chaos in our world.  From the stabbing incident in Pennsylvania, to the bus/truck accident in California, to a recent murder in a small Iowa town, there seems to be violence running amok.  This week we have also been reminded of the horrible bombings which took place a year ago at the Boston Marathon.  Add to these the unrest in the Ukraine and what appears to be an attempt by the Russian leader, Putin, to re-establish a Soviet Union of some degree, you can easily say that there is not a lot of sense in any of this.

Yet, we as humans want to try to make sense of these situations.  I think that we want to make sense of this because that allows us to gain some control over situations like these.  We want answers so that we can prevent these types of activities from occurring again.  We want answers so that we can “help” people before they take such destructive paths.  We want answers so that we can protect ourselves.  We want answers so that we know who to blame since we know it is not our fault.

However, life tells us that there is not always an answer.  Life tells us that even if we take all the protective measures possible, violence and destructive events still occur.  Life tells us that we cannot always stop these events.  So this can lead us to despair and a sense of hopelessness.

Hope does exist.  Hope is found not in ourselves or our human ways of protection and prevention.  The psalmist writes, “It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in humans.  It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes.”  (Psalm 118:8-9, NIV)  As a believer, I have to find that I don’t need to make sense of any of this.  I couldn’t even if I truly tried.  I need to trust that the Lord can make sense of it.  So during this Holy Week as we move toward remember Jesus’ death on a cross, that was a senseless act on the surface, I rely on the truth that it will make sense when God’s kingdom comes into its fullness.

Chain Reaction   Leave a comment

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This has already been quite a winter.  Lately there seems to be at least one day every week when driving a car can be treacherous because the weather brings conditions that make the roads dangerous.  The news seems to carry a story of a multi-car pile up due to chain reaction accidents.  But it is not always just in driving an automobile that chain reactions can occur in life.

I was considering this morning how events in our lives can cause chain reactions with other people.  Sometimes an event can lead us in a direction either positively or negatively.  When we encounter other people, that event and our reaction to it can impact the way that we interact with other individuals.  We can easily impact the mood of that other person because of our mood and then the other individuals can impact the moods of others whom they encounter and it goes on and on which is the type of chain reaction to which I am referring.  Again, this can be a positive chain reaction or it can be a negative chain reaction.

All of this has led me to issue a warning to myself, and maybe others, PROCEED WITH CAUTION.  Just as caution must be used when navigating on icy or snow-covered roadways, we need to use caution in regards to how we interact with others.  Of course, there is value in causing a positive chain reaction.  There is little to no value in causing negative chain reactions.  Our moods are what they are going to be and we can sometimes work hard to move ourselves from a negative mood to a positive mood.  However, when we find ourselves in a negative mood, we can strive to not begin a negative chain reaction as we encounter others.