Lance Armstrong, now a year and a half after his confession to Oprah, agreed to a CNN interview with Matt Majendie. He made these statements about why and how he continued the lie about doping:
“I was good at playing the part. After the 850th time, it’s not like I’m going to say, ‘Matt, you seem like a nice guy, I’m going to be honest with you.’ Once you say ‘no’ you have to keep saying ‘no.’ If this stuff hadn’t taken place with the federal investigation, I’d probably still be saying ‘no’ with the same conviction and tone as before. But that gig is up.”
I like to use this space in the digital blogosphere, not to criticize men such as Armstrong, but to offer an opportunity for us all to look inward as well, to examine our hearts for our own likeness of this scenario, and how it affects our lives.
The truth is we all have lies we have perpetuated for the “850th time.” Certainly they may not impact the world or make national news, but just like Lance Armstrong knew his own very well, we do too. He admits the federal investigation pinned him down to finally decide to face the truth and expose the lie. But what does it take for us to reach this same “line in the sand?”
Let’s zoom out to a big picture statement that Armstrong began with: “I was good at playing the part.” This seems to often be the catalyst that drives lies. We learn to play a part that is not true to who we are or the reality of our hearts. If any of us deeply examine where we lie, or believe lies, we will generally also find a part we are playing. And the longer and deeper the lie, the better we are at playing the part. The better we get at playing the part; the deeper the lie is driven.
For Christian men, the “federal investigation” for us is the Holy Spirit—diving deep, digging in, and calling us to truth. But—God is always a gentleman and never forces us out, so after time and constant conviction, He will leave us to the consequences, if we keep choosing them, all the while making Himself available when we are ready to come clean.
Today, consider …
Is there a part you are playing anywhere in your life?
Are you, like Armstrong, on your “850th time” in hiding a lie?
Can you sense the Holy Spirit shining a spotlight on any area?
Wouldn’t it be great today to thank God and announce, “that gig is up?”
Show me the right path, O Lord; point out the road for me to follow.Lead me by your truth and teach me,for you are the God who saves me. —Psalm 25:4-5a NLT