“But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field…’” (Luke 14:18, NIV 1984).
My 89-year-old father is a retired specialist in internal medicine. When he first began his practice in Memphis, he had to do far more than internal medicine to pay the bills.
He tells the story of the time he was forced to deliver a baby in a small field shack in Arkansas because things were happening too fast to get the mother to the hospital.
It had been quite a while since his last delivery and he did not quite have the feel for it. When the baby popped out, it slipped right through my father’s hands and landed in the pan. Dad grabbed the crying baby quickly and spouted, “Sometimes we have to do that two or three times to get them breathing.”
Ever find yourself making stupid excuses to God?
Ever mess up and then start explaining things to God so that He will understand that it’s really not as bad as He thinks?
I remember times in my life when I made promises to God, promises that I knew were in His will. I remember breaking those promises and then making excuses. I kind of thought I could reason God out of my failure.
It didn’t work out so well. God knew the truth and I suffered the consequences of those broken promises. He never quit loving me and He never tossed out my inheritance, but I suffered as I should for promises broken.
All of us will fall and fail at times in this life. That’s our humanity coming out. But we don’t need to complicate our redemption by laying the blame elsewhere.
I’m not even smart enough to figure out how to get home for dinner on time, so I probably should quit trying to help God figure out why it was reasonable for me to let Him down.
Let me keep my promises. Let me accept your displeasure and your mercy when I do not.