Who Can We Trust?

Who Can You Trust?

Saturday, January 19, 2013

6:55 AM

Psalm 36:5 -"Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds."


What a week in the sporting world.  Lance Armstrong confesses to Oprah, Manti Te'o a linebacker for Notre Dame was either the victim of a prank involving a girl who never existed or he was a willing participant who duped all of us into believing his girlfriend died of leukemia.  It is now known that the girl never existed but did Te'o know or not, was he the victim or a willing participant in the hoax?  And now the news that a wide receiver for the San Francisco 49ers is being investigated for sexual assault, the week that his team plays in the NFC Championship game.

 All of these men were people that other people looked up to.  People that were idolized by children and some adults alike.  And now disappointed.  Many were extremely disappointed by Armstrong, by his taking of the drugs and by the way he admitted it.  One person said he seemed genuinely contrite until he started talking about wanting to compete again.

Te'o is another story entirely.  Was he innocent, was he guilty.  What did he know and when did he know it.  People are disappointed by his story to say the least but they are also confused and bewildered.  This is one of the most bizarre stories in sports history.  At the very least he knew after the fact and still played along.

The incident with the wide receiver is unsolved.  There is an ongoing investigation surrounding the events that took place about a week ago, so only time will tell whether he is guilty or not.  Many have been quick to pass judgment on him however.  After all they have seen their heroes fall before.

In fact the shock and dismay over the events of the week (and this is just in the sporting world, what happens if you add in the political realm and the business world?), prompted one reporter to say, "Can you not trust anyone anymore?"  You could see the hurt and the cynicism as she made the comment.  But it is a good question, "who can you trust?"

People are people.  We are humans which means we do fail, and fall, and make mistakes don't we?  So perhaps one of the lessons that we should learn through all of this is that we shouldn't put people on pedestals.  We shouldn't idolize them.  None of us are worthy of that honor.  After all the Bible tells us in the 10 commandments, not to have any other "gods" before God.  It also tells us not to make idols for ourselves.  And yet that is something that we are good at aren't we? Martin Luther had it right when he said over 500 years ago, "the human heart is an idol factory."  We make idols out of a lot of things.  We idolize people and then we get disappointed.  God was right all along, He told us not to make idols, because if we do we are robbing Him of glory.  But not only that He told us not to make idols for our own good, that way we don't have to live with the disappointment.

There is something else that we can glean from all of this.  Something perhaps even more important, and that is the reminder that even though people and the things of this world will let us down, God Himself never will.  He is always faithful.  Hebrew 3 talks about His great faithfulness, and the psalmist certainly celebrates it in Psalm 36, "your steadfast love O Lord reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds."  God is faithful no matter what.  He is a covenant keeping God who loves us so much that He died for us.  God, the Son died in our place, so that we could be forgiven of our sins and our failures.  He died so that we could be saved.  Celebrities will let us down, other people may let us down, our idols will fall, but God never fails.  His love is amazing, it reaches to the highest heaven.  No wonder Paul prayed for the church to know "just how high, how wide, and how deep is the love of Christ."  It is a love that it is life changing, and it is a love that never fails.