An attorney's reflections on life, law, theology, sports, and other random topics. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

How the Tiger Woods Saga Is An Opportunity to Share Your Faith

There has been much focus in the media since Thanksgiving with Tiger Woods and the stories that continue to come out concerning his affairs with other women. Many have had their opinions about him being a terrible person, that he needs help, that he needs to focus on his family, that he needs to get back out on the golf course, etc.

One thing it is very easy for us to do, even as Christians, is to sit in judgment over Tiger Woods. Especially when there is a pattern of behavior, even we wonder how one could act that way and treat his family in such a manner; or that all the people around him would allow him to "go down that road."

The thing that we forget, however, is that we are no different than Tiger Woods. Yes, I said it. Read it again. We are no different, in that we are sinners that fall short of a God that is infinitely good, just and glorious. Apart from the grace we have in Christ, we too would do such things. The restraining power of the Holy Spirit (if obeyed, of course), is an amazing thing--but it is a function of the new creation that we are in Christ. But even then temptation will continue to beckon us to sin, and we often give into these desires.

So what does this situation have to do with our witness? Well, people are very quick to take a loftier position over someone else when they falter, regardless if they harbor the same types of desires or sins in their own hearts (or even if they are practicing it in their own lives). This is why Jesus in the Gospels extended the law to include thoughts that were sinful. The law only addressed actions; the Gospel addressed actions PLUS our desires and thoughts. So when someone says to you, "Tiger should know better" or "Tiger is an awful person" turn to them and say, "you know, I've struggled with some things in my life." Sure, we're not all adulterers; but men, can you say you've never looked longer than just a simple glance at a woman passing by and taken those thoughts where they lead? When we look down on a murderer, have we ever hated someone so much that we, in passing, would wish to see them harmed or even dead? Have we not all lied to someone at some point or played fast and loose with the truth? Human nature is to ignore that we are at our base a sinful creature but instead to think we are basically good; the populace is therefore shocked at others who act sinfully. However, we are sinful and our souls are black if we were to look at them as God could see them.

Tiger Woods ultimately needs Christ, as we all do. He can surely go into rehab for any addictions that he may have to address behaviors, but at the root of addictions is a need that is not fulfilled. This can ultimately be a blessing for Tiger and his family if it ultimately leads him to Christ. We must pray for him that the grace of Christ would take hold in his heart and the Gospel would take root in his life. He is one of the most powerful and influential people in the world, but he is human and fallen just as the rest of us. But the hope is Christ. Praise be to God!

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  • At 9:32 PM , Blogger David Blugerman said...

    Well said, Dan.

  • At 5:56 PM , Blogger Ms. Sylaneous said...

    I agree with David, 'well said'.

    You know, I often wonder: 'how can a christian sit and judge people and STILL be okay with them selves'. I grew up in chuch, my grandpa was the superintendant of my church, my grandma is the 'church matriarch'. I started playing the piano for my church when I was about 6 or 7 to about 21or so. I've been in church and aroung 'church folk' allll my life. It drives me crazy when one church person/family makes a mistake of some kind. Instead of that 'christian' family taking them in and praying for them and helping ease the pressure of the non-christians, we (I use we as in christians in general) tend to be the first ones to shun them! How dare we?!?!

    I just to talk to my ex about some of this. He was always invited to church by his moma nd cousin, but wouldn't go. His concern was 'I can't go in there, they know I've been to rehab, they know I do blah blah blah, they'll be in there looking at me and wondering what I'm doing in there'. My response was 'SO WHAT! If they sit in there and judge you while you are tying to make a connection to God, then THEY are in the wrong..they are judging you and you shouldn't be concerned about that!' I didn't even really get through to him though.

    I used this example some times (and I might be tttoottaally off with this one, and if I am, I never mind being corrected or being shown a different perspective..), BUT- my example being this:
    Homosexuals. I don't condone it. I don't encourage it. While I don't condone it and I don't encourage it, I don't dislike homosexuals. Why? Because I still think they are people. People that my God made. It's not up to me to make them outcasts of society. I don't think I should 'judge' their lifestyles (of which I believe is chosen). I think if I'm introduced to a homosexual and we speak, I am to express how I feel about it, with out being mean or rude. If he or she is willing to listen, it's my job as a christian to try to lead them to Christ and help them shake what I feel is a bad spirit of homosexuality. BUT- a lot of 'church' folks see homosexual and INSTANTLY shut them out of lives... I dont' think that's right.

    So yes. Tiger, an excellent golfer, is STILL a weak, mortal human, still will make mistakes... it's not up to the world to decide his fate... I say pray for the guy, and leave all that judging to the ultimate judge in Heaven.

    Good post!


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