For all of you soccer fans, yesterday was a sad day in France. Not only did the French National soccer team lose to Italy, but they lost on a bad note. The man who was voted the best soccer player of the world cup tournament, head butted another player in the chest throwing him to the ground because of a racial slur in the last few minutes of the game. He got a red card throwing him out of the game and he walked to the locker room not to return even for the awards ceremony.
Ken and I were very sad. We loved Zidane. He was one of the oldest players of the game and came out of retirement to help his country win a World Cup, and many people believed he would had done that had he not been thrown out of the game.
My heart broke for him because isn't that so much like many of us. Just as our greatest moment has the possibility of becoming a reality, we blow it before the end of the "race" or "game" and before the awards. We end up walking away embarrassed for how we reacted or responded wishing no one had ever seen that. We forget that God says in Romans 12 "it is mine to avenge says the Lord." We feel like we must win the argument or fight, or we must pay back a wrong someone has done to us. We often do these things behind closed doors in the privacy of our own home where God, in His grace, spares us the public humiliation. But God has seen everything.
I have been trying to teach my kids that we are suppose to return evil with good, and if their brother or sister is mean to them then they must think of something nice to do for them. 1 Peter 3:9 says, "Do not repay evil with evil, or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing." It is definitely easier for me to teach them this, than to put into practice, because my human nature (especially as a competitive athlete) is to "head butt the other guy in the chest." Of course I've never actually head butted Ken in the chest :-), but figuratively speaking I've done it hundreds of times.
Pray for Zidane's salvation. He is an Algerian who was raised in France and has probably never heard of our Savior. This is just another one of my dreams: to reach athletes like Zidane who have a platform they can use for God's glory.