I am not really a huge fan of the sport of cycling. Honestly, I get a little worked up when I’m driving and there is an entire lane taken up by one or two cyclists. I mean seriously, does a bicycle REALLY need to take up a whole lane? Don’t they know that I have to get somewhere? Okay, I’m turning into Old Man Snellings again so I’ll digress. All that to say, I’m not a fan.
This week Lance Armstrong admitted to taking performance enhancing drugs to be able to compete in the sport of cycling. I really don’t think that was a huuge shocker to anybody that has been following the story. He has repeatedly denied any involvement in doping in his sport, has vehemently opposed and even attacked those who have stated publicly that he did. I don’t think that Armstrong will win any awards for being “most likable athlete” or have any children named after him as a result of his actions. He has definitely made some enemies from this whole ordeal and angered a lot of people that used to be fans.
That being said, I think we have a really weird relationship with celebrities. When they are at the top of their game and when they are hitting on all cylinders, we love them and want to emulate them. When they screw up, we want blood! Its like either way, we are consumers and they are the product. We will gorge ourselves on their successes and then devour them when they fail. I’ll be honest with you and say that sometimes I’m at the front of the line when it comes to condemning people. Its easy really. The news plasters their pictures in plain view and then lists their sins in order from A-Z and I willingly jump on the bandwagon. “What a fraud! He’s such a liar! He’s not so cocky now is he?!”
This week I read something that gave me pause. It made me evaluate my heart and my attitude toward those who fail in a public setting.
“Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles;” Proverbs 24:17
Its amazing to me how I can casually look past my own sins and failures and pretend that others mistakes are somehow worse than my own. Its also amazing how I can forget that God repeatedly shows me grace and forgiveness and how dare I not show that same grace to others. Be a conduit of grace this week. Even to those who fail publicly. Maybe even especially to those.