It's not what I have[.] It's what I have to give. A blog about resources--gaining, giving, and sharing.

24 February 2010

Acceptance - Jesus' model

4:52 PM Posted by steve flores 5 comments
I watched Tiger Woods’ press conference with the rest of the world on February 19, 2010 and my heart began to break. I imagined the hurt and damage caused in his family and my heart grew heavy. I work with people struggling to overcome addictions and it rarely just affects the addicted, so much damage and carnage is left in the wake of confession or being caught. I didn’t have emotion waiting for the press conference to begin; I don’t follow golf or play golf. I can’t say I even ever watched Tiger Woods play a single game…I did own his Playstation game though (don’t think that makes me a fan), yet I am a fan of making things right. I hoped to hear a man take responsibility for wrong, not blame a system or another person for wrong actions. When the conference was over, I went to Twitter, typed a few words – “powerful press report,” and was surprised to see how many hate tweets there were. Once again my heart grew heavy.

I don’t agree with what he did, the affairs, but I was reminded of a similar person caught in an affair from the Bible – John 8:1-11. There were two responses: Pharisees (incredibly religious, should know-it-all, believers) – they responded with condemnation. Not what you would expect from the Believer types. Jesus’ response – acceptance. She never had a chance to confess her wrong doing, set-up a press-conference apologizing for wrong actions, or even ask for forgiveness, yet Jesus accepted her.

I saw so many hurtful, condemning, tweets, hurling proverbial stones, toward a person caught in his many affairs. I imagined Jesus stepping in on behalf of Tiger and silencing the pious comments with, “If any of you are without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at him.(John 8:7)” I guess it’s acceptable to judge from our dark corners, yet the moment the light shines on our own short-comings we want immediate acceptance. It’s sad and hypocritical…especially when proclaimed Christ-followers act like that! If any of my unbelieving friends read this, please understand Jesus doesn’t act like this. At times his followers do, but never Jesus. What you will find is love, acceptance, hope for a new beginning and a destiny.

If you’ve failed, Jesus loves you, accepts you and is on your side. If you know of someone who has failed, give them what Jesus would.

Matthew 7:1-5

(excerpt from Tiger Woods press conference)
I stopped living by the core values that I was taught to believe in. I knew my actions were wrong, but I convinced myself that normal rules didn't apply. I never thought about who I was hurting. Instead I thought only about myself. I ran straight through the boundaries that a married couple should live by. I thought I could get away with whatever I wanted to. I felt that I had worked hard my entire life and deserved to enjoy all the temptations around me. I felt I was entitled. Thanks to money and fame, I didn't have far - I didn't have to go far to find them. I was wrong, I was foolish. I don't get to play by different rules. The same boundaries that apply to everyone apply to me. I brought this shame on myself. I hurt my wife, my kids, my mother, my wife's family, my friends, my foundation, and kids all around the world who admired me.
I've had a lot of time to think about what I've done. My failures have made me look at myself in a way I never wanted to before. It's now up to me to make amends, and that starts by never repeating the mistakes I've made. It's up to me to start living a life of integrity.
Today I want to ask for your help. I ask you to find room in your heart to one day believe in me again.