What’s the state of another’s conscience to you?
A man by the nome de plume of “Chaplain Mike” (not a pseudonym for me) finished an article on a blog by Michael Spencer (also not me) called iMonk. He questions honestly and decries, from personal experience, the status that sports seems to hold over many a Christian. He ends up, more-or-less, on the side that sports has become a fixture that contributes not simply to cultural adaptation among Evangelicals, but worse: hypocrisy. I encourage you to read it here.
His conscience seems genuine, so I shall not evaluate that. His rhetoric is charitable and unassuming, so I will not evaluate that, either. But his final position seems a little short-sighted: he assumes and worries that sports is a serious problem for most of the church because he himself felt called to leave it behind, and came back to an addictive behavior with it later.
Obviously, my only contention with this is that he is evaluating the stance of the cultural milieu based on solely his own experience. He being the one called away from it, he being the one addicted to its constant promise of attention-filler… he is now the one calling out for repentance by others from it. There is even a tag chosen that says, “American Idolatry.” Well, to be quite frank, who knows the mind of his neighbor, to judge it?
See my point? Is not the real heart-issue the concern for holiness and restoration of your neighbor’s soul from addictions, rather than assuming your issues are your neighbor’s? The article might serve a better purpose if it were intended to root out one’s own addictive behaviors and caution against it out of love, rather than presupposing a coverall negation of the modern arena.
I think the most I can say to this is it seems to be a conscience issue. Is the Lord your priority? Then all is well. Is sports your priority? Then not all is well, and you already know it. Is sports an addiction for you? Then you need to be more self-controlled around it than perhaps some others who are not addicted, and respect each other for your differences.
Basically: don’t be a slave to sports.
Not: stop loving something that can be perfectly kosher to your conscience.