You Didn't Cause the Problem - Dealing with False Guilt
I grew up in a great home. I had two amazing parents that cared for me and loved me so much. They did their absolute best to ensure that I had everything I needed to live a successful and productive life. My parents never gave me drugs or encouraged me to party. Yet there was still a point where I chose to follow that path. I share my personal experience with this because it would be absolutely absurd for me to realistically blame my family because of my poor choices.
Yet many parents; after making attempts to help their loved ones, will live with a false sense of guilt. They take the blame on themselves.
“I remember a lot of emotionally, charged conversations with my parents during the end of my addiction. When the topic of finally going into a program would come up, I would do a lot of blaming. In the midst of the moment, Mom would reply with comments like “What did I do to cause this?” “What could we have done differently?” My addiction existed because I made poor choices. If you become the cause of the problem, then you also take on the burden of becoming the solution.”
In the middle of my addiction I knew how to leverage this guilt that my mother was dealing with to manipulate her into ultimately helping me get what I wanted.
As a former addict I now realize that addiction was a completely selfish behavior. It was all about me, all about how I could feel better. How I could escape the reality around me. After choosing to walk down that road, my family relationships suffered and anyone that would confront me became a threat to me getting the drugs.
One of the most powerful realizations that you can make is that you are powerless to change your loved one. Now this doesn’t mean that you are powerless to provide support and encouragement for them to make right choices. But you are powerless to change them.
There is a freedom in this. While this doesn’t automatically resolve the grief that you are dealing with,it can help you deal with the guilt that you are facing.
In scripture Paul encourages Timothy, "Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience." - 1 Timothy 3:9,
Paul is addressing Timothy about leaders here encouraging them to hold on to the faith from a place of pure conscience. As leaders of our families, false guilt can inhibit our ability to live fruitful and Godly lives. Guilt can cause us to make poor choices in an effort to resolve the guilt.
The great thing is that whether you have been living with false guilt or maybe some real guilt for some poor choices you might have made in the past, Christ is ready and willing to wash you clean of both. Come to Him today and allow Him to give you the clear conscience you desire.