by Charles R. Swindoll
I have been a Magic Johnson basketball fan ever since he made All-American at Michigan State. Magic was a champion without arrogance, an MVP without a peer.
And then, in one day, that love affair turned sour for some of us. We sat stunned. Magic had HIV! And to make the unbelievable hurt even more, he openly admitted that he had been promiscuous with numerous women. As he told Sports Illustrated: "The problem is that I can't pinpoint the time, the place, or the woman. It's a matter of numbers. . . . I confess that after I arrived in L.A., in 1979, I did my best to accommodate as many women as I could—most of them through unprotected sex."
Will someone please point out to me how those words resulted in such an avalanche of praise and approval, admiration and sympathy? While all the world seems impressed, I am both saddened and angry. Another national hero had been caught with his pants down . . . and now suffers the consequences.
At the risk of sounding terribly severe and perhaps unsympathetic, I must remind you that God's warning came over nineteen hundred years ago and has been true ever since mankind has inhabited this old planet: "Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption" (Gal. 6:7-8).
Am I concerned over the AIDS epidemic? You bet your life I am. Do we need to warn the public and use every means possible to find ways to combat the disease? Absolutely.
But if we're looking for individuals who have the right to speak publicly, let's choose those who really have been victimized, like innocent folks who were given contaminated blood transfusions or the innocent children who were born with it or brokenhearted parents whose homes have been ripped apart as they helplessly watch their son or daughter die. These and others like them are the real victims of the AIDS virus. Their words will carry far more weight than some athletic fox who spent too much time in the henhouse.
"And oftentimes, to win us to our harm, / The instruments of darkness tell us truths, / Win us with honest trifles, to betray us / In deepest consequence"
Excerpted from Day by Day with Charles Swindoll, Copyright © 2000 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. (Thomas Nelson Publishers). All rights reserved worldwide. Used by permission.