I get a lot of kidding, especially from my family, about being OCD, which I’m not. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is…well…a disorder. Being obsessive is simply being overly focused. Being compulsive means you can’t help being that way! It owns you! I am obsessive about one thing, but it’s not compulsive it’s a choice. I just figured this out a few years ago, because I wondered why I had become like I have. What am I obsessive about? Being responsible. I’ve spent six-plus decades hammering into my head that it’s important, and yes, I am obsessive about being responsible – doing the right thing! It’s what maturity does do you. It’s what living a lifestyle of trying to faithfully accomplish expectations, requirements, and goals causes you to become. A responsible person is what God wants us to be too. That is one of the reason why I know it’s not compulsive? I still have to tell myself to be that way! I still have to preach to myself and say, “Mike! It’s the right thing to do – so do it!” I don’t HAVE to pick up the trash on the floor and I don’t HAVE to straighten the crooked picture, but I do HAVE to do the right thing. Do I drop the ball occasionally? Sure! Do I occasionally let laziness win the battle! Sometimes, but nothing like I used to do. It’s what I’ve wanted to be since I was a kid! Responsible! Responsible for making the right choices and responsible for my poor choices when I made the wrong ones. It’s what mature people do. So, make fun of me all you want! (I actually enjoy laughing at myself too.) I’ll always be obsessive about my responsibilities – probably more so the older God allows me to get.
Having said that, the biggest thing that worries me about where I see our country – our culture – going, is the failure to be responsible and accept responsibility. Selfishness and immaturity are the source of irresponsible thinking and behavior. I guess that tells me why it’s happening, but it doesn’t explain why it’s getting frighteningly worse. Rather than take responsibility for birth control once people decide to be sexually active, we kill the babies rather than be responsible for them, and then we call it “Pro Choice” instead of anti-life! The decision to drive while drunk, and causing injury or death to innocent people, isn’t a poor choice or my fault, it’s the bartender who sold it who needs to be held accountable. On and on the deflecting of responsibility justifies crime, selfishness, greed, and all sorts of terrible behavior. The one that absolutely drives me crazy is calling murder “gun violence”. It’s no longer a criminal who committed horrendous harm to innocent children and bystanders, it’s all about the gun! It’s politicizing violent crime to create fear about the tool and ignore the person who did it. I’m sorry, but when 9/11 becomes “Plane Violence” I may throw up! Unfortunately, the examples are endless in our world today. The lack of a value system and the calling “good evil and evil good” give me a sad feeling about what’s ahead.
What can I do? What can we do? Be responsible. Make right choices. We can’t force that on anyone else or expect the world to do that, but we can and must be responsible for what we do, say, and think. Maybe if enough of us become a little more obsessive about being responsible it will set the example and at least remind people that there is an alternative to entitlement, selfishness, and irresponsibility. Most important of all, it’s only when we accept responsibility for our choices that we can climb out of the pig pen and return to a waiting and loving Father. He is the epitome of being responsible – even when it’s not His fault. We call it grace.