First United Methodist Church, Lewistown, PA 17044  ~  717-248-4618   ~  fumc200@outlook.com

Character matters, Cam.

February 10, 2016

        "He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,

        and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth." (Isaiah 53:7, NIV)

 

The greatest defeat in history was illustrated by Jesus Christ's death on a Roman cross. His response was and is priceless. He submitted.

 

Comparing anyone with Jesus Christ is patently unfair.

 

However, we are to imitate Christ so I digress.

 

When one stands on an international stage and millions of young impressionable kids are watching your every move, it's important they see character and integrity.  If that isn't possible or evident, then those millions will have been adversely affected by your negligence. You're not responsible for their future actions but will have influenced them in ways that were less than favorable.

 

So, the other day, the MVP of the NFL and losing Super Bowl quarterback, Cam Newton was willing to debrief on his behavior at the postgame interview. He abruptly left the interview in a huff. He defended that action by pointing out, "I am a sore loser."  Fair enough.  

                  He continued, "You show me a good-loser and I'll show you a loser." 

 

Whoa! Perhaps Cam should volunteer at a "Special Olympics" event.

 

    Life is about winning -- and losing. More can be understood about a person in the face of a loss than can ever be ascertained in a rousing victory.  Truth can often be painful, especially when feelings are hurt. Cam lost the biggest game on the biggest stage.  

    There is still good news. As one ages and matures, wisdom allows the brain to consider and reason before engaging the body to act. Instead of pouting and insolence, there is grace and character. Cam will come to learn that and over time will handle himself differently than the 26 year man that he is. His defiance toward someone holding him accountable was less than professional but was understandable. In time, the NFL and its fans will expect to see growth and maturity displayed by someone who has made such an impact on the football field.

 

Cam's defense in the interview sounded a lot like what transpires in everyday discourse. Not owning and taking responsibility for personal decorum is replaced with rebuttle and posturing against the criticism.  Truth is truth whether one wants to admit it or not.  The truth remains, Cam handled himself poorly. Here is Cam's rebuttle.

 

          "The truth of the matter is, who are you to say your way is right?'' he said. "That's what I don't

          understand. We've got all these people condemning, and saying he shouldn't have done this, that and

          the third. What makes your way right?'' Cam Newton

 

          (http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/14745754/super-bowl-50-cam-newton-carolina-panthers-defends-

          walking-reporters)

 

Wisdom will come to Cam, I'm sure of it. Good mentors will come alongside of him and help him understand some things that aren't evident to him right now. 

 

        "The proverbs of Solomon.....  ......for attaining wisdom and discipline; for understanding words of

        insight; for acquiring a disciplined and prudent life, doing what is right and just and fair; for giving

        prudence to the simple, knowledge and discretion to the young—let the wise listen and add to their

        learning, and let the discerning get guidance—for understanding proverbs and parables, the sayings and

        riddles of the wise. The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and

       discipline." (Proverbs 1:1-7, NIV)

 

I want wisdom to be my guide and I desire the power of the Holy Spirit to bend my own will toward God's ideal but realize it will mean my rigidness will have to be broken for this to occur. 

 

"O Lord, break any hardened places in my heart and reform those deformed areas that I adamantly defend. Heal me and use me. Give me increasing freedom as your truth is revealed. Bring me closer to the model Jesus offered and in some cases, keep my mouth silent. To the glory of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen"

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