"I jump into a sand pit for a living"
Good nameA good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold. Proverbs 22:1
The world of international cricket is in turmoil this week with three players suspended over allegations that they have taken money to bowl illegal balls at agreed moments of the game to aid a betting scam. Sadly it is not the first time that cricket has been caught up in a scandal of this nature.
It is easy to condemn three young men from poor backgrounds for whom the offer of a large sum of money was a much bigger temptation than it would have been for many of us. We might also feel that the young men have not been well managed by their federation. However that may be, the ancient words of Proverbs ring true. The players –if proved guilty – will have sacrificed their good name for money. And to quote Tom Brown (Tom Brown’s School Days) the players may find that, “A character for steadiness once gone is not easily recovered”.
In choosing an example for sport, let us not think sport is any worse than any other aspect of human life. In my own country in the last year a number of politicians have lost their good name over dishonesty in the area of expenses. Successful (and already rich) businessmen go to prison for “insider dealing” and the like.
And remember that Jesus said that “He who is without sin should throw the first stone”. Sadly leaders of Christian ministry are not immune to financial irregularities. Those of us who are in Christian ministry, is our good name intact in areas of money. Are we ever tempted to exaggerate a ministry opportunity or achievement to increase its fund-raising potential?
Are we happier to speak at the church, which gives a big preaching fee rather than the small chapel?