R.I.P. Human Responsibility – a Funeral Homily


R.I.P. Human Responsibility – Born: Beginning of Time.  Died:  2011

A Funeral Homily by Robin Dugall

Grace and Peace to you through God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.  I have to admit, I haven’t known Human Responsibility (H.R.) in a personal and intimate way all of my life…but over the last number of years, we’ve built a very good relationship.  It is my honor to be able to reflect with you over the next few moments as we talk about his legacy.  For in one way or another, all of us have to confess honestly that HR has made at least a small impact on our lives.  For many of us we would not be the people we are today without his illustrious influence…so, those of you who are here to honor his memory but you don’t know him that well, please forgive those of us who have known HR well as we become a bit indulgent with our recollections of someone who has made a life-altering impact on who we are today.

H.R. had a bright beginning from the moment he was brought into existence.  In other words, it was an illustrious start to a long life as HR was birthed as the twin sibling of H.F., Human Freedom.  Both HR and his twin were born in a place called Eden, a gifted place of the presence of God in a purpose-filled world.   HR and HF started to grow and flourish as other creatures inhabited their world…a tender relationship was carved out between HR and HF and those who would become their close neighbors, human beings.  Unfortunately, it didn’t take long for these neighbors to start playing favorites when in came to the twins.  It soon became more than obvious to HR that these humans much preferred HF (at HR's exclusion…of all the gall!)…it was that relational damage that would go on to chart a specific and eventually destructive course in HR’s life as time went on.  When his life journey began, the Creator gave H.R. a key role in human decision-making.  He was a partner with human beings in taking care of the world and engaging in life-giving work that made life purposeful and enjoyable.  HR gave these human beings a sense of value as they took him seriously and he taught them how the balance their relationship between the he and his brother.

Then, in a pivotal moment that we all remember, two of HR and HF’s friends, did something that went on to test their relationship with the twins.  As I briefly alluded to a moment ago, this moment in HR’s life would go on to be the defining moment for the rest of HR’s years on this planet.  I don’t want to belabor a very trying and destructive time in HR’s life, but the decision that "A" and "E" (otherwise known as "dirt boy and dirt girl") made to actually start to abuse HR’s twin brother, HF, was the moment that forever hurt their relationship with HR forever.  It would never be the same again…the moment HF was abused, A and E tried to avoid HR.  They ran from him like he was an infection preferring rather new friends like Blame, Shame, Victimhood and Death.  After a while, this story began to be tragically repeated over and over throughout HR’s life.  He was the easy one to try to avoid…it was easy to pick on HF and get away with it because all anyone ever had to do was run away from HR and ridicule him. 

I don’t want to go and on about this – but let us suffice to say that HR’s life from that moment on became one of loneliness and desperation.  All the years that HR was alive could have been best summarized by the word, “pain”.  Every time his brother, HF was abused, which became an addiction for all of Creation’s creatures, HR was more and more isolated.  Yes, he had some good friends…Confession and Repentance were close to HR but they too soon became the butt of jokes and appeared as “old school” or “old fashioned” to those who thought they knew better. Over the past years, Individualism, Excuse, and Relativism joined HR’s old nemeses Blame, Shame Victimhood and Death as those who took precedence over the influence that HR desired to make on life.  Apparently, they had slicker and more attractive personalities especially since H.R. was so old.  Add that to the fact that HR was, frankly (we all know this) a bit forthright, cranky, and a bit of a pain to deal with, people slowly started to embrace new relationships.

Over the last few years, HR experienced most of the debilitating effects of his loneliness.  Governments with HUGE debts decided that they would be more popular to leave to that debt to future generations or blame people who have befriened HR and made something of themselves…famous people looked to their problems as addictions or psychological disorders which gave them permission to embrace Excuse rather than be HR’s friend…others would spend time with Blame looking to genetics, upbringing, the past, the color of their skin, ethnicity or place of birth rather than visiting HR. People learned from “Sponging off the System” and from “It’s your Responsibility not mine” and lastly from “You take care of Me” rather than give HR the time and attention he deserved.  And friends, don't get me wrong…because we all have to admit right here and now that we’ve taken advantage of him as well.  Let’s face it, we all neglected HR and in so many ways, our lives are worse off because we didn’t spend more time paying attention to him and his message in our lives.  For many of us, we’re stuck, dead on the inside and lifeless because new life always comes as a gift from God by way of a relationship with HR. 

HR passed away from a broken spirit over the last several years.  His deteriorating influence and health finally caused him to succumb to deadly forces that sucked the life out of him and left him a lonely, broken, and empty shell.  I must say, that I wish there were more like HR in our lives…we needed him and he was the first person we ignored.  Heaven forgive us…and may we find some way to honor the legacy and memory of Human Responsibility at some time in our lives!

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