Friday, February 19, 2010

Tiger stepped up big in the first round of this major...

I've never really been pro- or anti- Tiger Woods...but today I became a big fan.

Tiger Woods could have chosen to answer to only a civil legal system for his transgression and never been any worse for the wear in the long run. Come on! We've seen it happen time and time again with famous people caught with their hand in the cookie jar. One of the most recognized sports personalities in the world surely would have weathered a divorce and short- term loss of marketability. Look at Michael Jordan, Bill Clinton, Rudolph Giuliani, Hugh Grant and Prince Charles to name a few from recent past. All weathered the storm of public opinion and carried on with little to no change in their livelihood.

What Tiger Woods did today took unimaginable fortitude...because he didn't have to stand in front of the world and repent his wrong doings. Again, he would have been no worse for the wear if he hadn't and surely no less wealthy.

I believe this is worth watching regardless if you're a golf fan or not...

That's less than a minute of over seven minutes of apology where he humbly states...

"The issue involved here was my repeated irresponsible behavior. I was unfaithful. I had affairs. I cheated. What I did is not acceptable, and I am the only person to blame. I stopped living by the core values that I was taught to believe in. I knew my actions were wrong, but I convinced myself that normal rules didn't apply. I never thought about who I was hurting. Instead, I thought only about myself. I ran straight through the boundaries that a married couple should live by. I thought I could get away with whatever I wanted to. I felt that I had worked hard my entire life and deserved to enjoy all the temptations around me. I felt I was entitled. Thanks to money and fame, I didn't have to go far to find them. I was wrong. I was foolish. I don't get to play by different rules. The same boundaries that apply to everyone apply to me. I brought this shame on myself. I hurt my wife, my kids, my mother, my wife's family, my friends, my foundation, and kids all around the world who admired me."

Wow...that had to be tough.

I will in no way try to condone or defend Tiger's behavior. But, I've been in his shoes. No, not at that magnitude of world scrutiny, but it's never an easy thing to admit your failures as a human being if only in front of the most important people in your life...your family and close friends. He did that, and I greatly respect him for his courage.

We live in a cynical world, and there will be those who question his sincerity, motive and commitment to change. Some will root for Tiger to fail again for whatever reason we root for such things as a society. I'm not going to be in that group. If he never swings another golf club or pimps another shaving blade, I still hope Tiger stays true to his words today and becomes a better husband to his wife...a great father to his kids.

I believe that ultimately we are not judged by the successes in our life, but rather how we handled the adversities or weathered the inevitable storms.

That should be the major he stays focused on to win...and Jesus would make the best caddy.


David said...

There is something wonderful about real repentance, and a sincere: "I was wrong." that we need to see more of.

I don't know which end of the golf ball to hold, but I do know that those words, “I was wrong," will resonate with many who heard them - they do with me.

I do hope that he finds Jesus - that kind of forgiveness is made for a time like this.

Michelle said...

I still love him and hope to see him at Augusta.

Did you know one of my dreams was to see Tiger play golf in person?

Mesha said...

This comment is one that I respected MOST from his speech: "I was wrong. I was foolish. I don't get to play by different rules. The same boundaries that apply to everyone apply to me."

I'm going to be honest, at first I struggled with why the whole nation needed an apology from him...he sinned against God and his family...but then I respected that comment tremendously. Those in the "lime light" are exalted to ungodly levels and there are young men and young women who aspire to be JUST LIKE THEM. You guys I remeber in high school talking about famous male "role models" who could have "any lady they wanted," and young ladies who drooled over how "what guy would ever say no to her?" It's like when they are at the "position" it is as though the world wrongfully accepts at times that they can "play be different rules." They have the same promises as each of us: "once to live, then to die, then to face the judgment seat.." of none other than Jesus Christ. Just like David said, I too hope he finds Jesus because he attributed his lack of morals as of recent years to his following away from his early buddhist teachings.

Thanks for the post Tony C.

Tracy said...

I thought along the same lines as you Tony when I watched footage of Tiger Wood's formal apology.

I also felt happy for him because I recognize that he's struggling with an addiction and that to come out of addiction you have to be honest (not to mention that, as Mesha brought up, he's a role model). I'm reminded of a Bible verse that I have to come back to often from Proverbs 28:13:

"He who conceals his transgressions will not prosper,But he who confesses and forsakes them will find compassion."

The issues is not that we will be without transgressions, it's that when we are honest and choose to turn away from our sin, we receive both God and His people's compassion.