Living excuse free | The Practical Disciple

Living excuse free

In a recent post I addressed the problem of rationalizing our sins.  PD reader Laurie shared 4 of her most common excuses.  That inspired me to share mine.  My experience has been (and my experience is vast) of rationalizing that most of my rational lies fall into one of about 4 categories.

1)  Begging off on other people.  “Everyone does it.”  “I am not as bad as her.” “They made me do it.”  These type of statements are examples of blaming others for the choices you make.  Such words deny personal responsibility.

2)  Thinking ourselves inadequate. “I couldn’t do that I am too old, young,  can’t speak well enough.”  Truth be told you are inadequate.  You need God.  God doesn’t call the equipped he equips the called.  So whatever your lacking, trust that God is fully aware of that and will provide.

3)  Blaming Ignorance.  “I didn’t know better.”  Often times that is true.  But once you make that statement, it can no longer be your excuse.

4)  Blaming circumstance. The big red flag for when you are entering this danger zone are the words, “If only.”   “f only I had….more time, more money, were in a different church, understood the Bible better, weren’t so tired, etc.”

5)  Trapped in the past.   If you find yourself saying “I can’t because…” and then you fill in the blank with a story from your past, you are probably rationalizing.  The harsh truth is that was then and this is now.  What happened then may not truly have any bearing on your situation now except for in your mind.  The truth is admitting that you are allowing the wounds of the past to hold you hostage now.  Ask for God’s healing or release so that you can move forward in faith.

Freedom from Excuses

Whenever your find yourself doing the wrong thing or failing to do the right thing and your explanation begins with “I don’t” or “I can’t” you really need to slow down and see if what you are saying is truly valid.  Even if it is true, you need to make sure it is not a denial of what God can do.  Perhaps, you can’t, but God can.  Embracing your inadequacy and clinging to God’s providence is the first step toward freedom from your excuses.

Stop living in what you are or are not and start living into what God has been and will always be.

I love the story of the missionary, Gladys Aylward.  Aylward was a missionary to China who walked twelve days with nearly one hundred orphans in order to get them out of harms way of Japanese troops coming into the area.  At one point when she was beginning to feel despondent, one little girl said something to the effect of, “You going to get us through the mountains just like Moses got the Israelites out of Egypt.”  Aylward, confessed that she was no Moses.  The little girl was undaunted by this.  She replied, “Yes, but God is still God.”

Regardless of what excuse you are clinging to, it does not change the fact that God is still God.  So, abandon your excuse and trust God.  Blessings to you as you seek to be courageously honest with yourself.

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  • I am in Shanghai at the moment, my first visit to China. My husband needed to return for business and we decided this time I would join him.

    It takes time to acclimate to the volume of people in the subway/train stations getting on and off. It is a bit unsettling to actually be one of the few being “different” and subsequently stared at.

    I still find the universal language can be a smile. On the subway this afternoon, an older gentleman made way for a young child and mother to sit down while traveling. I looked at the adorable little girl, having a smile on my face, I then raised my head to discover the father of the child watching me. I continued the smile, as did he. It was one of those moments you realize how powerful our non-verbal communication is, it crosses all language barriers. A smile is worth so much…we need to do that more…

    Jane Armstrong 11 years ago


  • I had to find that post and read my comment.

    I loved your sentence:”God doesn’t’t call the equipped he equips the called.” That requires a great deal of trust, something that my experience with that particular sin taught me…at least it took me further down that road in trusting God, than I was.

    I am thankful for God’s grace through my struggle with sin. Whether it is the sin I discussed before or the sin that I face everyday, being a fallen person, I am humbled that God would care enough about me to stay with me through it all, forgive me, and love me all the more. I don’t want to sin…during that time in my life I talked about, I was scared to death that I was so tempted and wanted to do the wrong thing. I had never been in that place before. I never thought I would ever be there. But I was. And because God kept his promise to never leave me, to provide me a way out, and to make something good from the bad, (Roman’s 8:28), I learned to trust Him even more, and am in a much better place, loving my hub more than ever. The intense pain is gone and I am praising God for all of the miracles he gave me during that time.

    Now I am praying for God to show me my sin. Since my life is settled and the sin I face isn’t surrounded by intense emotion, I don’t want to dismiss it as unimportant.

    Laurie 11 years ago


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