A cloud of suspicion

The quickest way to take the air out of a trusted relationship is to lie or cheat. And when people don’t trust you, it’s difficult to overcome negative perception. Years ago a professional football team, the New England Patriots, was caught cheating. The team was spying on other teams in order to gain a competitive advantage. Just a few weeks ago the same team stirred up another controversy.

Integrity lost

After the cold, rainy game had ended, officials discovered that 11 of the team’s 12 allotted game balls were deflated below the minimum air pressure required by NFL rules. Doesn’t seem like a big deal, does it? However, with the messy weather conditions, it allowed players to grip, throw, and control the ball with greater ease. Thus, a ball could be thrown further and more accurately, without dropping or fumbling as easily. Furthermore, the opposing team did not use the same deflated footballs during the game. Who wouldn’t want such an advantage over an opponent? After being questioned repeatedly, the coach and players continue to deny any involvement or knowledge of how the balls were deflated, but the investigation is ongoing.

Although the Patriots won the Super Bowl, this year’s team will be also be remembered for this particular controversy. In an interview a few days after the deflategate story surfaced, quarterback Tom Brady said, “I was very shocked to hear it, so I almost laughed it off thinking that [it] was more sour grapes than anything. And it ends up being a very serious thing when you start learning the things that were … just the integrity of the game.”

Integrity earned

Integrity is not a commodity that’s available for purchase or trade. A person must earn it, just as trust and friendship is earned. Also, honesty is not easy; often times it costs us significant amounts of time, energy, and resources. But in the end, the value of integrity will always outweigh any advantage gained through dishonest efforts or actions.

Question of the day: When do you have a difficult time being honest?
Focal Scriptures: Matthew 7:13-14; Ephesians 4:11-16; Luke 10:25-37

For a complete lesson on this topic visit LinC.

comments powered by Disqus