I wuz gunna… I have someone very close to me that has always had a habit of explaining why she didn’t do something, with the same answer every time… ” I wuz gunna.” This went on well into her 30’s. I finally said one day, ” Stop telling me you were gunna, and just do something… anything!”
I had an intern one time way back in New York City Relief. In our internship program, we always trained people to be responsible… to take leadership responsibility in fact, so that they would learn to push through difficulty, and that the buck would always stop with the leader.
Her name was Sonya. Every time I would address her because something wasn’t done properly or on time, she always and I mean always said, ” Ohhh… it’s because so and so didn’t get that part done.” Ohhh it’s because I couldn’t get that because…” After much too long of this going on, I said to her one day; ” Sonya… do you know that every time I try and address something with you to help you understand that you need to take responsibility for anything, you say…”ohhh it’s because of this or that.”
What do you think her reply wuz? “Ohhhh… it’s because of… I wuz gunna but…”She wuz in our internship two years and she left NEVER having taken responsibility for anything. I had told her she would never grow if she kept making excuses.
This was very sad for me. It grieves me when people don’t take responsibility for themselves. It’s really one of the big keys of growth, maturity and certainly leadership. When people don’t see this reality, it really blocks them in literally every other area. They just don’t grow. They don’t see that they are perpetual victims. And victims aren’t leaders, that is, until they get set free from being victims, then they can be great leaders.
I was always a victim too. That was my M.O. It’s amazing how blinding it is when you play the victim. It seems like the way to go… never holding the bag for anything. And then appeasing everything with supposed, “good intentions”. “I wuz gunna… but.” Good intentions aren’t good enough.
I believe it was C.S. Lewis who said, “The road to hell is paved with good intentions.” Why? Because good intentions without actually following through, lead to less and less responsibility. Like Sonya, wasting two years in an internship program that had the potential to change her life, left hardly better than when she came. She could have become all God wanted her to be. How do I know? It happened to many others who came through our leadership intern program. Some became pastors, others leaders in other capacities.
Next time you hear yourself say, “I wuz gunna”, think again.