I Still Don’t Believe Lance Juiced
I still don’t believe Lance juiced.
I have laughingly tweeted that out a few times lately. I’m being facetious. Honestly, I don’t care.
I followed every Tour de France that Armstrong won. I watched as he destroyed other juiced up cyclists and, as we now know, lied about being juiced himself. I read his biography and concluded that he was a great cyclist and arrogant human being. I pulled for him to win, but would have never wanted him to babysit my children. I really don’t care if he juiced because everyone else in the Tour was juicing as well.
But here’s the thing.
There are people who will make excuses for him because they like him. Hey, Barry Bonds was a Hall of Famer before he ever hit 72 homeruns in a season. Mark McGuire hit 49 during his rookie season when he was a skinny runt. Roger Clemens was a great pitcher in 1986 with the hated Red Sox.
People will stand up for people when they like them. They will demonize those that they don’t.
We see that in the church. If someone you like makes a mistake, you cut them slack. If you don’t, then let’s cut them out of our lives completely.
That shouldn’t be so. We should call a spade a spade.
Did Paul like Mark? I don’t know. But I’m willing to bet that he and Barnabas were good friends. Paul was willing to let his working relationship with Barnabas slide because he didn’t find Mark to be reliable enough to take on a missionary journey. Paul did what he thought was right. Did he agonize over it? Perhaps. But I know that his main concern was proclaiming the gospel. So, Paul and Silas hit the road together. Barnabas and Mark went in another direction. Maybe they all made up because Paul later references Mark in his epistles. I hope they did.
We all have a tendency to cut some slack when personal feelings are involved. Or to write someone off. We don’t need to go to either extreme. Did Paul make a mistake or did Barnabas? I’m not sure. Either way there was some reconciliation later. I’m willing to bet that both sides were willing to compromise some on their position.
Do you ever tend to give someone the benefit of the doubt because you like them? Do you tend to pass judgment quickly when you don’t?