There is a laughing joke between my older brother and I about our childhood. He says I would yell, "MOMMA!" just to get him in trouble when he was doing nothing. Now SOMEWHERE in this tale is the truth---perhaps I might have made a preemptive strike a time or two-KNOWING he was going to hit me if we were in the same room for longer than 5 minutes. I have always laughed and said when I have bone cancer in my arm, it was caused from him punching me every time we passed. SOMEHOW we survived our childhood--I survived the punches--no cancer--and he survived Momma. I got the easy end of that equation.
Our nation has become a nation of victims. We shirk our responsibility for our own actions and blame any and all possible causes. Why we even explain away mass murder with bad childhoods. We look to the sins of generations past to give us a pass on our own poor behavior and failure to thrive today. A long litany of excusing our failures come to mind --
POOR GRADES--my parents never helped me study
POOR DRIVING--I drive just like my dad
POOR MANNERS--no one ever taught me
POOR SPEECH--I talk like those around me
And THOSE are the more innocent examples. The more serious ones include-
PREJUDICE--Learned at the feet of my forefathers
FAILURE TO SUCCEED-Our people are never given a chance
SORRY PARENTING--I parent like I was parented
MASS MURDER--I was bullied my entire life.
NOW---our past circumstances certainly affect our current behavior--UNLESS--we redeem those circumstances and refuse to play the victim.
In my own life, I have played the victim and savored the righteous indignation of others for my poor treatment. The truth of the matter is there are always two sides to every story---AND---my perception of truth may not be another's. Until I tire of victim status and claim the crown of victor, I will be exactly where Cindi described--STUCK! No forward motion --no movement beyond being a victim--no hope for a better day while stuck in the victim mentality.
How are things redeemed? How do we move forward? The first step is the acknowledgement of where we are---STUCK. The next step is recognizing we can not only move past our circumstance, but we can redeem them by changing our course of action. Put the past behind, by refusing to play the role of victim any longer and take charge of moving forward. I promise you---it is not one simple act---it is a day to day process. I made a conscious effort to parent better than I was parented. AND then there were those days I found myself acting exactly the way I abhorred during my childhood. My choice was the victim claim of my childhood or start again the redemption process. I could be stuck in the victim mode or move forward and claim the prize of doing better.
I am not a victim---I am a victor---How about you?
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.