I don’t blame people who feel hurt by the hypocrisy they have seen in the world of Christ followers. Christians can sometimes be as wise as doves and gentle as serpents.
I have been on the receiving end of this at times, and unfortunately have also been an issuer of stinking thinking.
The problem with me is it takes awhile to realize how off-track I have been. It’s easy to dismiss the greater implications of Jesus when I’m caught up in my own game.
I was thinking about the Good Samaritan this week and came to the realization that I was not usually the good guy in the story. I have many more instances of being the priest who passes by on the other side of the road.
I sometimes have a limited tolerance for jumping into really tough crises. It’s easier to distance myself in the name of schedule or letting someone else be there. And my default way of dealing with the weightier call of the gospel is to blame someone or something.
At this moment, I’m stepping aside from my excuses and telling those who have been hurt or unjustly reprimanded, I get it. Let’s blame the hypocrites and the two-faced and by all means stay away. But, blame is a self-made trap and it doesn’t heal the hurt or bring us into light.
So why blame? Dwight Lee Wolter said,
Blame works. If it weren't effective, it wouldn't be so popular. Like a potent narcotic it absolves any sense of personal responsibility for the mess you find yourself in: Blame God for children dying in car accidents. Blame poverty on poor women having babies. Blame Hurricane Katrina on God's wrath for too many homosexuals living in New Orleans. Blame Republicans. Blame Democrats. If we can just find someone or something to blame, then we can ridicule it, fire it, divorce it, disinfect it, vote it out of office and finally end our pain and fear. But blame, like narcotics and antibiotics, loses its effectiveness if overused. Blaming those who blame doesn't work either. It just makes them double-down and blame more until spiritual rigor mortis inevitably sets in. The only known antidote is love. Love works better than blame. Love drains the strength of blame and never loses its effectiveness. Love lessens the fear, pain and shame behind blame and helps us to see and accept who we are and what we have done. Love allows us to let go of our end of the rope in a tug-of-war between blamer and blamed. Then the Blame Game ends.[i]