We live in a world where reality is often a figure of our imagination. We have made sports and celebrity figures, heroes. We worship people we only know through media. Yet, it is as if we "know" them, when in reality they are not even acquaintances. They just help our team win.
However, we talk about them and make judgments about them solely based on what is printed in the media, all the while never having one face to face conversation with them. We build them up with their on the field accomplishments or an occasional good news report about them. We wear their jerseys, tape decals to our bumpers, lose sleep after they fail to help our team win. And in the process we find ways to find all the good about them because they are helping our team win.
All the while forgetting that they are very human. As human as you and me, and just as capable of doing some really sinful things like you and me. But what alarms me the most is that we are so quick to nail them to the cross for their wrong-doings. We seem to rush to judgment and jump ship and hold bitterness towards people who we have never met.
It's as if we love to hear the gory details of their troubles and search site after site to build our mud-slinging responses. I am quite frankly broken over all the responses, whether justified or not, at some of the individuals listed above. I am in no way affirming their supposed and sinful behavior. But whatever happened to the day when our first response was brokenness for these individuals and a prayer of healing? Why do we need so much hatred and angst towards men we don't really know?
This morning I read this in Proverbs 17:4 and it hit me like a ton a bricks... "Evil People relish malicious conversation; the ears of the liars itch for dirty gossip."
We have chosen where we stand on Lance, Manti, and Ray. Yet what might happen if we prayed for them and extended some grace? The last time I checked Ray Lewis who I have never spoken to, donned a shirt with Psalm 91. Is it possible for us to forgive a man or do we still lock him into his past? Could Lance actually be on a humble journey of repentance that would lead him to his need of Jesus. And Manti, well, we don't even know the full story yet.
Don't we all need a dose of grace. And for that matter, imagine how many people would abandon your ship if every detail of your life was press worthy. Maybe instead of burying these men with hatred, gossip, and our own opinions we give them an ounce of grace and a word of prayer to help them walk through the days ahead.
You see, there will come a day when you stand where they stand and long for one person to give you an opportunity to come clean and start over. My Savior does that for me everyday! And the last time I checked he took all my sins to the cross. Maybe we need to stop nailing others to the cross for things Jesus already died for. Enough okay!
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