No Excuses Necessary!
by Mary Beth Singleterry
There is a song our church quartet once sang which began with the line, “Excuses, excuses, you hear them every day…” The lyrics were actually quite humorous, as the song proceeded to list excuses everyone can identify with.
I could certainly relate to this song, as at that time in my life, I had an excuse for everything. There was a reason why I was late for appointments, why I forgot to do something, why I couldn’t finish something, why I couldn’t get the job, etc., etc., etc.! The excuses seemed quite reasonable to me, like old friends, really. Nothing was ever my fault; there was always some external situation which kept me the victim (and never the victor!). Yet, I was not quite sure why my life seemed to be going downhill and why I felt very discouraged most of the time.
One evening I began to study Martha Wilcox’s article, “Definition of Intelligence.” I came upon this paragraph which changed my life and my way of thinking forever: “The harmful effect of alibis and excuses on the individual is far more serious than we realize. Many persons are in hospitals, even in insane hospitals because they have hidden behind an alibi or an excuse until their so-called human intellect is enfeebled and impaired. They permitted their headaches, their indigestion, their nerves, their belief in persons and circumstance to be an alibi or excuse for something that was hard to do, or that they did not want to do, until they literally lost their power to decide things intelligently. An alibi or excuse is a form of deceit that is used to hide the facts in the case, and the results are most disastrous to the one who indulges in them.”
I could see myself in that statement, and knew I needed to do something radical to change my way of thinking! Initially, this article made me much more aware of when I was making an excuse. I could catch myself and stop the negative pattern of thought.
But real progress came as I prayed more earnestly and grew in my understanding of Christian Science; it then became very clear to me that excuses are totally unnecessary when we have God at the head of our procession. The question I began to ask myself was, “Is this something God would have me to do? If it is, He will give me all the capacity I need to do it. And if it is not something He would have me to do, I simply will not do it — no excuses necessary!”
What liberation, and it really was not at all difficult! I began to gratefully realize my life was becoming God-centered instead of self-centered, and believe me, that has made all the difference.
I will always be grateful for the Martha Wilcox book and for the inspiration I received from it. She had been a worker in Mrs. Eddy’s home and had learned first-hand from Mrs. Eddy how to demonstrate the principles of Christian Science.
So, if you find excuses slowing down the good plan God has for your life, kick them out! Trust our dear loving Father with what He would have you to do. You’ll be so very glad you did!