Proverbs 19:3 in various translations and paraphrases.
The foolishness of man ruins his way,
And his heart rages against the Lord. (NASB)
People ruin their lives by their own foolishness
and then are angry at the Lord. (NLT)
A person’s own folly leads to their ruin,
yet their heart rages against the Lord. (NIV)
When a man’s folly brings his way to ruin,
his heart rages against the Lord. (ESV)
The foolishness of a man twists his way,
And his heart frets against the Lord. (NKJV)
And my personal favorite from The Message.
People ruin their lives by their own stupidity,
so why does God always get blamed?
You know what? I have lived out this little saying more than once in my life. I can’t count the number of times I have done something ill-advised and then sat back and wondered how God could have let something so bad happen to me. On many occasions I was warned about the possible outcomes and I still went ahead with my bone-headed plans. When things inevitably blew up in my face the first thing I did was point the finger at God and at others for letting me get into the mess I was in. Very rarely did I man up and admit that it was my fault. It was much easier to mad at others than to take the blame. I think we can all relate to that on some level.
I don’t know why it is so hard to own up to our messes. Deep down inside we know that we cause them. I don’t know if it is arrogance or embarrassment that causes us to deny and point the finger at someone else. I can’t imagine how God must feel when He watches us mess things up. It must be especially hard when we know we’re messing up and continue to do so in spite of the warnings. How does it feel when we then have the nerve to blame Him? I think parents can relate to that on a smaller level with our kids. We see them do the same thing to us from time to time. The difference is that we are human and we do mess up. We may even cause the mess occasionally. God, however, only has our best interests at heart.
I try to remember that when I blow it now. I remind myself that God’s grace is way beyond anything that I can break. All I have to do is man up and go to Him. That’s all any of us have to do.
Grace and peace.