II Corinthians 2:9-10 (MSG) The focus of my letter wasn’t on punishing the offender but on getting you to take responsibility for the health of the church. So if you forgive him, I forgive him. Don’t think I’m carrying around a list of personal grudges.

At no point in our country’s history has there been such an epidemic of victimitis as there is today-that is, people who declare themselves powerless against their circumstances, metabolisms, or upbringings. This victim mentality prompts many alcoholics to say, Drinking problems run in my family-it’s genetic. There’s really nothing I can do about it. Criminals say, “Look at my upbringing. I never had a chance. It’s not my fault. How do you explain when you do not take responsibility for your life?

I read a story about a warden of a federal prison who told me that if he believed everything the inmates explained about how they got to jail, there would never be a guilty person in jail. Don’t create or allow circumstances to develop that can destroy you. Have you accumulated crushing debt? Given in to addiction? Refused to resolve broken relationships? Take responsibility for your life. Don’t fall back on excuses like bad luck, bad genes, or bad parents. Christians aren’t exempt from the victim mentality either; we often put another spin on our situation-we blame God or the Devil for things as well.

The seductive power of the victim mentality is that you never accept responsibility. It’s always someone or something else’s fault. Today is a new day, and it’s time to take responsibility for your own life. I’m not saying your circumstances, genes, and upbringing don’t affect who you are. They clearly do. What I’m saying is, regardless of all these things, we remain responsible for our own behavior. And more importantly, God is capable of bringing about change in any life, even yours-no matter how messed up it is. Love you all today and enjoy taking responsivity it’s tough but what needs to be done.

In His Love,
Pastor James Baker, Jr.

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