“A king may move a man, a father may claim a son, but that man can also move himself, and only then does that man truly begin his own game. Remember that howsoever you are played or by whom, your soul is in your keeping alone, even though those who presume to play you be kings or men of power. When you stand before God, you cannot say, “But I was told by others to do thus,” or that virtue was not convenient at the time. This will not suffice. Remember that.” ~ King Baldwin IV, “Kingdom of Heaven”
There is so much good stuff to unpack in this quote, but I’m going to pull out probably the two biggest to talk about.
A king may move a man, a father may claim a son, but that man can also move himself, and only then does that man truly begin his own game
No matter how big or small of a player you feel like you are in life, no matter how much you feel like someone else is calling the shots, you can ALWAYS make your own decisions. Your boss can tell you what to do, and so can your parents, but until you step out on your own, think for yourself, make your own decisions, you will not be truly alive. Don’t get me wrong, doing what your told by your parents or boss isn’t bad, but you hit a point when you need to think for yourself.
This can get messed up in so many ways. You have the parents/bosses who micro manage, who tell you every little decision you make, and try very hard to not let you think for yourself. Then you find yourself in a situation where they aren’t around to direct you and you are left clueless on what to do…
Then you have those who let you make your own decisions too early. The mom who tells their 10-year-old son that “daddy left, you are now the man of the house and have to take on the role of your father”. This child will never grow up known what is good and what isn’t. It will all be trial and error. And while they will make decisions for themselves, there was no guidance, no teaching, no passing on of wisdom.
You need to have a balance. A king may move a man, a father may claim a son, but a man can move himself. You can think for yourself. Never forget that.
When you stand before God, you cannot say, “But I was told by others to do thus,” or that virtue was not convenient at the time. This will not suffice.
The second lesson I want to talk about is this idea of being accountable for your own actions.
In our court system today, if you are hired by someone to do something bad, the blame rests more on the person who did the hiring than the person who actually carried out the act…
But that’s not how it works when you stand before God. Like I said in the first part of this, you can make your own decisions, but since you are capable of making your own decisions, you are also responsible for your actions. No one can “make you do it”.
I know I have a bad habit of covering my own ass. I don’t lie, per say, about things, but I’ll make sure the facts that clear my name are prominent, even if it means that I have to shift the blame to someone else. But that is something I am working on. I need to take full responsibility for myself and my actions. I can’t blame anyone else, if it is my job to make sure t hat _______ gets cleaned up, I can’t blame so-and-so for not doing their part of cleaning it up. It was my job, my bad.
So remember, you can think for yourself, and at the end of the day, there is no one else but you to take responsibility for your actions…