I'm sorry you're facing the challenge of walking through this media firestorm, Mark. Since I never had to deal with the inconceivable level of competition that confronts a professional athlete, I know I am not qualified to judge you. No man is. Period.
It's our job - or, at least the job of those of us that call ourselves Christians - to understand that we've all (that means everybody) fallen short of the mark in our own lives. Knowing our own human failings - the mistakes that are the natural province of the human condition - your very real and understandable personal struggles should only serve to draw us closer to you in fellowship.
With all due respect, I would challenge anyone that might choose to attack you to examine their own lives for dishonesty. Of course, any honest individual will say that they've mangled the truth on more than one occasion. Same thing goes for "cheating" - we've all done it in one way or another.
But, says the a member of the mob, so-and-so was a respected public figure. There's are no excuses for the rich and famous. I'd ask those folks to walk a mile in your shoes, sir.
Which brings to mind a story:
A close friend of mine was in treatment a decade ago. A famous professional athlete was in the same unit, but downstairs to offer him some seclusion given the quite intrusive nature of the press. Many of the other patients were complaining about this athletes "special treatment." Several voiced the opinion that they wished they were a rich guy worthy of "my own private hospital wing." My friend disagreed, "You guys might want the worst day of your life to be national news - not me."
He was right, of course. I'm a very poor, working class dad with three kids. I've made many mistakes in my life. But my failure to "make it big" has yielded the blessing of keeping my youthful errors off the air.
So, my wife and I are keeping you and your family in our daily prayers. We pray that you experience the healing of confession and forgiveness, most importantly with your family, friends and yourself. We pray that you can contextualize these events as being more a manifestation of the human condition than of some unique failure on your part. In this, we hope you can feel a part of all of us that know what it's like to fall and get back up to experience even greater success.
Thank you for the courage to step forward. For, while it wasn't necessary, it certainly represents a demonstration of faith in the Reality that is the measure of all of us.
Finally, thank you for your years of work in Major League Baseball. Your efforts will not be forgotten once the cloud of controversy regarding this issue passes into obscurity.
God Bless You & Yours,
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