Eyes That See

“I Once Was Blind”

Bobby Petrino: Deceived

Bobby Petrino has a lot of enemies in the football world.

Former ESPN and current Yahoo! Sports journalist Pat Forde had this to say when Arkansas first hired who he called the “disingenuous drifter” in 2007, and this to say after Petrino’s recent failed motorcycle ride with a 25-year-old female assistant.  Lawyer Milloy, one of the players Petrino abandoned when he quit mid-season as head coach of the Atlanta Falcons, chalked Petrino’s current situation up as karma.

Petrino lied about being alone on the motorcycle he wrecked before fessing up just before a police report revealed the truth.  It turns out that Petrino had what he admitted was an “inappropriate relationship” with the young lady, gave her $20,000 in cash, gave her a job in the Arkansas athletics department, and then gave her a ride on his Harley.

These actions cost Petrino his job, and probably earned him a few more enemies.

However, none of these enemies are Petrino’s worst.  His actions resulted from the sinister schemes of his two worst enemies, enemies we share with Mr. Petrino, and they are out to get you and me just like they got him.

I’m not saying that Petrino is not responsible for his decisions, his actions, and their consequences.  He is, and so are the rest of us.  What I am saying is that Bobby Petrino was deceived and defeated by an opponent more formidable than any Honey Badger (the other one, either), and the same opponent has us on his schedule.

Not only is this opponent greater than any who’s ever stepped on a football field, he also has a spy; a better system of knowing you and your plays than Bill Belichick and his “spygate” (come to think of it, the same two enemies got Belichick on that one, too!).

These two enemies are the devil and Petrino himself, specifically Petrino’s human, innate desire for sin.  Each and every one of us has the same desire for sin, and as a result we are each sometimes our own worst enemy.  We each got it from our mommy & daddy, they each got it from their mommy & daddy, and so on all the way back to Adam & Eve.  The apostle Paul explains it better than I ever could at the end of Romans seven.

I certainly don’t condone Petrino’s actions, and I’m not out to defend him.  However, with the same slithery serpent hissing in your ear and mine, and with each of us sharing the same defective human nature Petrino has from our first and common ancestors (Adam & Eve), let us not rush to pass judgment on his sins while we each try to QB sneak our own sins past The Judge.

It’s very easy to point a finger at Petrino right now.  It’s not so easy to say, as we should and as my Mama would say, “but for the grace of God, there go I.”  But for the grace of God, each one of us could be in his shoes right now.

If the worst thing you have done in the last month were on the front page of every paper, all over the internet, and looping on national television, you would bear every bit as much shame as Petrino does.  The temptation to lie and deny it would be every bit as strong for you and me as it was for him.  The only difference between his high-profile sins and our low-profile sins is that we won’t have to answer for his on judgment day.

Dreadfully and thankfully, there is a friend who is greater than our worst enemies, a friend who can save us from them.  He bore such great shame, for our sake and for our sins, that his shame would put Petrino’s shame to shame.  He lived the perfect life that you couldn’t live, that I couldn’t live, that Bobby Petrino couldn’t live; and he died the death that each of us deserves for our sins.

We need Him, because like Petrino we’ve all been deceived and defeated more than we care to admit.  We need Him, because like me none of us have any chance on our own on the day of judgment before almighty God, who is too just and holy and righteous to even look on sin.  We need Him, because there is no other hope for sinners like us.  We need Him, because we either pay the eternal penalty for sinning against the eternal, living God on our own; or we trust in the One who paid our penalty, who took our shame, who died for all who would believe in Him before rising three days later in victory.

Your enemies would have you believe that sin is worth it, whatever “it” may be.  Ask Bobby Petrino if being deceived and defeated by “it” was worth it.

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April 11, 2012 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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