It’s the practice of taking praise or blame for something good or bad a person does.
As kids we blamed most, if not all of our mistakes on something or someone else.
We either pointed out what someone else made us do, or blamed someone who snuck into the house virtually unseen before breaking something, and then snuck back out while remaining unexplainably invisible.
If we did something that went well we were quick to take the praise, though.
If we were consistent and put the responsibility for anything we did or did not do on some outside force, then we could avoid having to deal with the consequences of our own actions.
And if we could convince other children that every idea or decision to act was put in our heads by that outside force, we could be seen either as the victim of some other entities malevolence and garner empathy, or being selected by that entity to do good things, be considered somehow chosen.
The difficult moment was when it became clear not only to others, but more importantly to ourselves, that we were responsible for our own thoughts, words, and deeds.
And for some, that moment can be crushing, especially for those who have lived their whole lives under that delusion.
I channel surf while I do my artwork just to have other voices in the room, and occasionally I will stop if something catches my attention. Religious channels are included in this process.
One common theme in every religious show I have listened to is that none of the people doing the talking ever say they have decided to do something. Everything they do and every thought they have, no matter how sublime or mundane, has been given to them by a God who incessantly speaks to them.
If I decide to go to the store or just into the kitchen to get another cup of coffee, I accept that these decisions were my own, arrived at by necessity to get food or that second cup of coffee.
But for the religious folk it was God who directed them to get that second cup, thereby bestowing on that mundane act a greater meaning, and themselves a higher position than most because God even directs them in the simplest act.
I know a woman, a state Representative in another state, who claims God told her to be a virgin missionary until He changed His mind and told her not only to get married, but whom she was to marry. He told her to have and raise her children, and then, when they were older, to get into teaching to bring Him back to the classroom. Following this He told her to run for state representative. No decision in her life was ever made by her, and no legislation she proposed could be discussed because it had come directly from God. If her legislation failed, it was not because it was bad legislation, but because Satan had entered the hearts of her opponents.
She lost on a number of issues, and this she could not understand.
When desired appearance meets reality it can be bewildering.
And so this moment came to the Duggars.
Their fecundity made them attractive to the same media outlets that were also attracted to a little chubby children’s pageant entrant who was living a life that proved the Beverly Hillbillies were not that far removed from reality in their dealings with that greater world of bells that rang just before someone knocked on the front door or see-ment ponds.
A family who cranked out kids fascinated us, and their religious views were beyond entertaining.
There was money to be made, but until the moment when they had to accept reality, it was all about the spreading of God’s word which they could have done even without the hefty checks.
Their show was about doing God’s work because He had apparently told them to do that.
Claiming that the end of their series did not have a negative effect on them, it would appear it actually did. According to sources close to the family, the Duggars are “heartbroken that they’ve now lost that platform”, that platform being a TV show where they could spread God’s word while letting others know what is wrong and un-godly about them.
As 22 year old Jessa Duggar put it in a Facebook post,
“I will speak to you a hard truth. I do not write this because I think that it will bring me popularity. It won’t. But it is Truth from the Word of God: the Bible. To not tell people this is to hide the truth from them. To keep silent is to not care for their eternal destiny! I care about you, and this is why I am speaking out! One of the most quoted verses from the Bible is Matthew 7:1 ‘Judge not!’ Whenever someone speaks out against something that God calls sin, ‘Don’t judge!’ can be heard coming from a thousand lips. People don’t like to have other people disapprove of the way they’re choosing to live their life”.
“People are content to live on in lying, cursing, pride, anger, bitterness, disrespecting of parents, lust, pornography, fornication, adultery, and other sexual sins– and if anyone tries to confront them, their attitude and response is, ‘You live your life, I’ll live mine. Don’t you tell me what to do! Only God can judge me! They don’t even realize what they’re saying. God’s judgement isn’t something to be taken lightly! It should scare you! Man’s ‘judgement’ is a 1000x lighter… usually just a voicing of disapproval. But when unbelieving, sinful men die and stand before God, He justly condemns them to hell.”
Things like that.
The family’s statement on the cancellation that they prefer to call a cessation of filming was:
“TLC announced that they will not be filming new episodes of 19 Kids and Counting. God’s faithfulness and goodness to us, along with His abundant grace have given us strength and joy even in the most difficult days”, the “difficult days” being the recent ones where they were held responsible for not dealing properly with their son Josh’s problems during his teens.
You see, they had done nothing wrong. Whatever they did was God’s fault.
“Yes officer, I was going faster than the posted speed limit, but, you see, Jesus is my co-pilot, and they were his feet on the pedals”.