I don't know about you, but I tend to get the most upset when people do things to me that I would never dream of doing to them. Perhaps that's why I get so frustrated with check writers at the grocery store. Especially when the offending party isn't courteous enough to get their checkbooks out before the cashier gives them their total. I would never do that to all those people in line behind me.
Buuuuuutttt...then reality sets in. Three minutes later, in the grocery store parking lot, I'll load up the food, get in the car, adjust the radio, turn on the seat warmers, plug in my phone, and check my teeth for leftover pieces of lunch...all while someone is waiting patiently behind me to get my parking place.
The Lance Armstrong situation has had me thinking a lot about this concept lately. It seems that everyone is flabbergasted that a world champion cyclist could stoop so low as to cheat his way to the top and then lie about it. And, honestly, I was a little miffed myself when he finally came clean. Lance used performance-enhancing drugs in order to win the most prestigious cycling competition on planet earth - seven times. The decision put millions of dollars in his bank account and gave him worldwide fame. How could he do that? You and I never would...right?
Have I ever accepted cash as income from someone and not claimed it on my taxes?
Have I ever been given too much change at a store and not returned it?
Have I ever "rounded up" the time on my time card?
Have I ever taken more credit than I deserve for something?
Have I ever found something that wasn't mine and not looked for the owner?
Have I ever kept the cable package that the cable company forgot to turn off?
Have I ever copied a CD or DVD from a friend?
If I am tempted to sometimes "fudge the truth" for the sake of a few dollars or a few pats on the back (or because I can justify it somehow), what right do I have to judge someone who cheated and lied in order to get millions? I'm not saying Lance Armstrong was right, of course. I'm saying that I'm not as different from Lance as I'd like to believe. And you're probably not either.
I recently heard a quote that said something like, "You want to really get Christians upset? Put 'em in a room full of people who sin differently than they do." In the book of Matthew, the Bible talks about it a little more seriously: "Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?"
Was Lance's admission disappointing? Sure. But before I get too carried away knocking Mr. Armstrong off of his literal and figurative pedestal, I'm going to try my best to work on the "planks" in my own life and pay little attention to everyone else's "specks."