Early in our two-hour-long conversation, the young man told me that he believed he was cursed. I suppose I could have responded, “Well, of course, we’re all living under the curse of Adam,” but I held off on that. Instead, I let him go along with his discourse of how time after time, things just hadn’t worked out for him.
After a while, I started to probe a little bit, asking him for details of one thing and another, including how he happened to choose to come to Highland. Turned out, he’d spent less than two hours getting information on the school and community. When the athletic scholarship he’d hoped to get from another college fell through, he looked for some other school. “I found out that HCC had dorms and a cafeteria,” he grinned, “that’s all I needed.”
It was my turn to grin, “We still have dorms and a cafeteria; we didn’t change.” I then went on, using the information he’d given me to examine the situations he’d described to me to show that he “was cursed.” In every one of them, he’d demonstrated a pattern of making decisions that either ignored the available information or had been made without getting any information.
I’ve found, certainly, in my own life and seen frequently in the lives of others, that most of the blame for bad situations rests ultimately on the decisions that we have made ourselves.
I guess that at least in some ways, it seems easier to blame God for the messes we find ourselves in rather than to accept that responsibility ourselves. I guess, too, if we choose to trace it all the way back to Eden, right to that fateful conversation by the Tree of Knowledge, the thing that started this whole curse business really is this: bad decision-making.