And Isaac was forty years old when he took Rebecca, the daughter of Betuel, from Padan
Aram, the sister of Laban, for himself for a wife." Genesis 25:20
Rebeccah was the daughter of an evil person, the sister of an evil person, and lived in a community of evil
people. Nevertheless, she did not learn from their evil behavior.
Many people try to excuse their faults by blaming others as the cause of their behavior. "It's not my fault
I have this bad trait, I learned it from my parents." "I'm not to blame for this bad habit since all my brothers and sisters
do it also." "Everyone in my neighborhood does this or does not do that, so how could I be any different?"
They use this as an excuse for failing to make an effort to improve.
Regardless of the behavior of those around you, you have the ability to be different.
The righteous person might be considered a nonconformist and even rebellious by those in his environment
whose standard of values are below his level, but we are responsible for our own actions. Pointing to others in your environment
who are worse than you are is not a valid justification for poor behavior.
If you ever find yourself saying, "It's not my fault I did this. It's because of the way I was raised or
because I learned it from so-and-so" - change your focus to, "I'll make a special effort to improve in this area to overcome
the tendency to follow in the footsteps of others."
Blaming others for our faults and saying that we cannot do anything about them is an
indication that we do not want to change. Make a list of the negative traits you picked up from your early
environment and develop a plan of action to improve in those areas.