Be a good sport
Posted on Monday, August 13th 2012 at 10:11 am
I saw a picture this week of Tanya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan after the 1994 Olympic skating trials (this was before Tanya tried to get a leg up on Nancy by taking her out at the knees). Tanya Harding's face seethed with jealousy as she stared at her rival. Not much of a good sport. We were always taught in athletics to compete with everything we had, but if we lost to congratulate the winners. That is good sportsmanship.
Most of us embrace the concept of good sportsmanship in athletics. Tanya Harding's low blow on her rival nearly 2 decades ago is still remembered in the same way as Michael Vick's dog fighting. Her covetousness brought out the worst in her. Yet in the game of life being a bad sport is trending up. Many of us have competed for the prize but our dreams of victory have not been realized. Shouldn't we still be able to cheer on those that have succeeded? We are able to do that when we watch the Olympics, even though most of us would never have made the team.
I have several friends that have become bitter through the battle of life. Failures in business and financial challenges have caused them to resent those that have been successful. They say that the wealthy should pay their fair share (even though the top 10% of Americans pay 65% of the taxes and the bottom 50% pay only 3%) and that the government should take care of their every need. Frankly, taking more money from rich people and trying to meet every "need" will not solve the problem it will make matters worse.
Just like in sports competition makes us better. The reason America is the shining city on a hill that people are dying in the desert to get to is because of our free enterprise system. The other thing that makes America shine is the way we give. When there was a Tsunami in Indonesia or an earthquake in Haiti America stepped up. That's because we still believe that we personally need to give when someone is in need and not rely solely on the government. If we keep moving to a European styled socialistic system the heart of giving will die. Then we will all be completely reliant on the government. And what if our government shifts as it did in the 1930's in Germany and all of that control rests in the hands of an evil regime?
As it says Romans 12 we should rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those that mourn. In other words when you seem someone succeed be happy for them, and when you see someone in need meet that need yourself.