In their book “Boundaries,” (1992, Zondervan), Drs. Henry Cloud and John Townsend describe an encounter with desperate parents seeking help for their 25-year-old son, Bill. It reads strikingly like America today. The parents describe a litany of problems:

“that had begun at a very young age. … In recent years he
had exhibited problems with drugs and an inability to
stay in school and find a career. It was apparent that
they loved their son very much and were heartbroken over
the way he was living. They had tried everything they
knew to get him to change and live a responsible life,
but all had failed. He was still using drugs, avoiding
responsibility, and keeping questionable company.”

The doctor responded by asking where Bill was:

“Oh, he didn’t want to come.”

“Why?” I asked.

“Well, he doesn’t think he has a problem,” they
replied. …

After they had talked for a while, I responded: “I think
your son is right. He doesn’t have a problem. … Would you
like for me to help you help him to have some problems?”

Although the doctor in this book was talking to one family, I
believe he is addressing America today. As the doctor explained to the

Look at it this way. It is as if he’s your neighbor, who
never waters his lawn. But, whenever you turn on your
sprinkler system, the water falls on his lawn. Your grass
is turning brown and dying, but Bill looks down at his
green grass and thinks to himself, “My yard is doing
fine.” That is how your son’s life is. He doesn’t study,
or plan, or work, yet he has a nice place to live, plenty
of money, and all the rights of a family member who is
doing his part.

American society today can be divided into roughly three groups.
Liberals are the distraught parents. They’ve given little Bill
everything. The state-supported drug-addicts, promiscuously absent
parents, and shattered children are irresponsible ol’ Bill and his
offspring. Their grass is green because the rest of us water it.
And the remaining third of Americans are on the road to insanity.
We are being driven there by our follow citizens, because they can
and do use the force of the state to assuage their guilt, and give
ol’ Bill yet “one more chance.”

The popular term for all this is codependency. It’s rampant in the
workplace and the home. It’s one of the reasons why abused women
stay with their abusers. Overworked employees stick with workaholic
bosses. And people stuck in bad schools, dangerous neighborhoods,
and powerless victimhood plead with their tormentors for more of
the same. Or as Drs. Cloud and Townsend write:

Just as we can interfere with the law of gravity by
catching a glass tumbling off the table, people can
interfere with the law of Cause and Effect by stepping in
and rescuing irresponsible people. Rescuing a person from
the natural consequences of his behavior enables him to
continue in irresponsible behavior.

Today we call a person who continually rescues another
person a codependent. In effect, codependent,
boundaryless people “co-sign the note” of life for the
irresponsible person. Then they end up paying the bills –
– physically, emotionally, and spiritually — and the
spendthrift continues out of control with no
consequences. He continues to be loved, pampered, and
treated nicely.

It would be bad enough if liberals and the “victims” they imagine
themselves “rescuing” were only harming one another. But they’re
not. They’re destroying our nation, our children, and our future
through their sick symbiosis.

Liberalism is a political perversion of the redeeming quality that
God calls upon each of us to exhibit in our personal lives. That
quality is Love.

Love. We use the word in our daily conversation, yet few of us
could explain what it means. While you’re thinking about it, let me
propose a working definition: Love is seeking the greatest good for
another person.

The greatest good for a drug addict is not a clean, state-supplied
needle. The greatest good for a 13-year-old girl who is
desperate for the love of her father is not school-supplied
condoms. And the greatest good for guilt-ridden liberals is not a
Republican Congress that furthers the indulgence of their
codependent lifestyle.

Jesus told the rich young ruler to sell all that he had and give it
to the poor, “and then you will have treasure in heaven.” He never
suggested that the rich young ruler get elected to Congress — then
exploit the power of the state to impoverish one group of citizens,
while enriching another. To do so is to play God. Is it not
instructive, that the only Man in history capable of that role
avoided it in this instance? Jesus always gave freely of what he
had. He calls upon us, as individuals, to do the same. Matthew
reports that the rich young ruler turned his back on Jesus, “for he
had great possessions.”

America today needs many things: She needs fathers who love their
children. Mothers who understand that children need more than two
paychecks. She needs educators willing to teach, when the power and
prestige comes to those who indoctrinate. America needs religious
and moral leaders able to recognize evil and willing to stand
against it. She needs individuals willing to love their neighbors
as themselves.

America does not need yet another political program. She does not
need a great political leader. America needs a Physician.

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