From “busy at work” to “it’s too cold”, they were all lame excuses.
Reference: and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. (Luke 2:37 NIV)
Explore: I was recently chatting to a Personal Trainer who was very frustrated with his clients. Over just one week a third of them had not turned up to training.
One of them had a decent excuse – a death in the family – but all the other excuses were lame. From “busy at work” to “it’s too cold”, the Personal Trainer was not impressed at the lame excuses he had been given.
We agreed that anyone could justify their own laziness. It doesn’t take us long to convince ourselves that we shouldn’t do something that is difficult or challenging.
When I was in ministry I found many of the congregation were the same when it came to church attendance.
Whether it was a big event the night before or too much study, it was amazing how easily people convinced themselves that a church service was not important.
Application: When I was reading about the prophetess Anna in Luke 2, I thought she was someone who had a good excuse to not do anything. She had only been married a short time before her husband died and left her behind, a nobody in her society.
If anyone had a good excuse to turn from God, it was Anna. Why had God allowed this to happen? Why had He brought such hardship upon her?
And yet, that was not her reaction. Instead of turning from God she ran to Him and spent day and night in the temple. Even though she was probably considered lowly in her society, she was blessed by God as He revealed Jesus’ identity to her.
We all have excuses. There are reasons why we don’t feel we can trust God or don’t believe we need to attend church. There are explanations for why we don’t exercise or why we slack off at work. But ultimately we make a decision each time we make an excuse. We choose a direction and we must live with the consequences.
My hope is I’ll be like Anna. When life serves me a challenge, I’ll turn it around to serve God.
Prayer: Lord, it is so easy to come up with excuses. Forgive me when I choose the easy path. May I commit to living it hard with You. Amen.
What easy option have you decided to take lately?
This article was written by Linda Bailey
Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.