‘The Lord is slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, forgiving iniquity and transgression, but he will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, to the third and the fourth generation.’ (Numbers 14:18 ESV)
While I was wasting time today, I came across a blog post that piqued my interest. The author, Lisa M. Price, was correlating personal responsibility with societal ills. I can’t agree more. It’s easy to blame our problems on racism, liberalism, conservatism–pick any -ism you choose, but before we release the scapegoat into the wilderness, maybe we need to look inwardly. Perhaps we can take responsibility for our errors instead of pointing fingers at others. I think the elephant in the room is the fact that we say our problems are typically somebody else’s fault, and we certainly shouldn’t rely on the government to shore up our problems. It’s apparent that the government cannot even handle the responsibilities it’s been given. It’s like having a podiatrist perform brain surgery. He may be the best foot doctor in the world but I’m not letting him near my head.
In my estimation, the largest issue that negatively impacts society are the abundance of broken homes. I was alarmed at the statistics I read on singlemotherguide.com, but the first sentence is what I found staggering. It states, “…single motherhood is now becoming the new “norm”. Granted, there are many reasons that a woman may become a single mother, but I’m focusing on the irresponsible aspects. The statistics support that this new “norm” is the normalizing of immorality. 49% of single mothers have never been married. This isn’t merely men acting like pigs and sowing their sinful oats. Women also shirk decency by behaving like harlots.
I know, it’s time to bring up the liberal rhetoric because we all have the right to do whatever we want to be happy. That sounds reasonable on the surface, but it really means, “Let us indulge our wanton lusts and engage in whatever debasement and humiliation is necessary to attain happiness.” Are you happy? Your doctor tells you that you are pregnant. Are you happy now? You can’t find the guy you had a one night stand with and decide it’s best to have an abortion. Does this make you happy? You have complications when the doctor removes your unborn baby with a giant suction tube. You don’t have to worry about that inconvenience but now you are sterile. Is this what you were thinking of when you were thinking about your happiness?
I’m not trying to pick on women, but who is stuck with all of the decisions and responsibilities when dad skips town or moves to prison? This isn’t racism, either. Black people have the same responsibilities with their bodies as whites and Hispanics. I’m also not trying single out the poor as I have a heart to minister to the homeless. The fact is that 39.6% of unwed mothers are poor according to NWLC. Of those, more than half live in extreme poverty. Does this ensure that children of unwed mothers will overcome poverty? Of course not. Children that grow up in poverty will likely remain in poverty. Then their children will live their lives in poverty. The tragedy in this nightmare is that the children are innocent but are paying for their parents’ sins.
Poverty doesn’t care about the color of your skin. Poverty is in many cases, the result of bad decisions. The problem with poverty is that it rarely stops at one generation. If you make bad decisions that land you in the poorhouse, those decisions can impact generations. Your one night stand may affect your great-grandchildren. Do you have a right to engage in risky behavior that can cause unhappiness in your great-grandchildren’s lives in the name of happiness? If I was a sociopath that enjoyed killing people, do I have a right to murder my neighbor so that I can be happy? It’s an absurd example, but the truth is that my actions can and do impact my children’s lives. I have the ability to improve their lives through a pattern of good decision making or I can destroy their future if I make some ill-conceived choices.
Nowhere in the Bible does it say that we have a right to happiness. Happiness is not guaranteed in this life and in our reckless pursuit of happiness, we should not compromise our integrity. We need to consider the consequences and refrain from activity that could negatively affect not only our lives, but the lives of our children. This “new normal” isn’t working out. It’s irresponsible to label aberrant behavior as normal in the first place.