Winning with Dignity and Honor
"Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord."1
It's rather depressing how the news media thrives on presenting negative news because that's what sells—or at least that's what we're led to believe. But as Michael Josephson suggested in an issue of Character Counts, "let's stop thinking about the handful of ex-college coaches who were fired for dishonorable conduct and the one sportsman who belittled his profession and destroyed his own good name (and possibly his promising career) through illicit sexual behavior—and remind ourselves of the noble side of sports.
"When leader Lance Armstrong's bike went down [in a Tour de France grueling bicycle race] after a collision with a spectator, his closest challenger Jan Ullrich and other lead cyclists slowed to wait for him to get back into the race. They were honoring an unwritten code of honor. According to Diane Pucin in the L.A. Times, Ullrich said, 'If I would have won this race by taking advantage of someone's bad luck, then the race was not worth winning.' Apparently, the world's best cyclists understand the difference between being declared the winner and really winning."2
That's what I call admirable and is wonderful to see. I surely wish that our news media would major on this type of stories and help inspire our youth to more noble deeds of honor, valor and kindness, and thereby help make the world of today a much better place in which to live.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, please help me to work, compete in sports or games, and live with honor, and thereby maintain a high level of self-respect and bring glory to Your name in everything that I am and do. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."
1. Romans 12:9-11 (NIV).
2. Michael Josephson, "Honorable Men and Honorable Competition" 315:4 Character Counts, www.charactercounts.org. (c).