It’s easy to see what others are not doing and to complain when we feel those in leadership are not adequately addressing issues. And certainly there’s a time to call out these issues and hold responsible people accountable. But often we do this at the neglect of our own responsibilities and our freedom to make a difference.
For instance, while the people of God might collectively support those in need, we’ve neglected our duty to love when we simply wait on the church to do this for us. Loving our neighbor starts with us individually. And we must do our part without waiting on others, regardless of how much they should be playing their part as well.
Likewise, we have a collective responsibility to make our communities more humane, just, and beautiful. And we naturally appoint leaders to help us accomplish these goals. But this doesn’t excuse us from our part to play and we can still make a difference even if our appointed leaders are not.
This is similar to our responsibilities in marriage. Our duty to love our wife is not dependent on her. While things are a lot easier when we’re both doing our part, we must still show up and work on our side of the street even if she’s not working on hers. And our faithful commitment can make all the difference in the long run.
Blaming others for what they’re not doing leaves too much undone that we could do ourselves. And focusing on the choices we can make is not only freeing and empowering for ourselves, it sets an example and often has a lasting impact on others as well.
Don’t wait on others to do what’s in your power to do yourself. Faithfully play your part in making a difference throughout your life and relationships.