Pursuing Wisdom / Sports / World Magazine / January 22, 2015

What Sports Teach us About Perspective

From my most recent article at WorldMag.com:

Ohio State third-string quarterback Cardale Jones led the Buckeyes to the first-ever College Football Playoff National Championship Monday night against an underperforming Oregon Ducks team and their Heisman Trophy–winning quarterback Marcus Mariota. It was an unlikely and wonderful story. The day before in the NFL Playoffs, Peyton Manning and his Denver Broncos lost to the Indianapolis Colts, with Manning struggling mightily.

Those are the basics of the stories, but you may have looked beyond those simple facts in the midst of the sensational narratives being presented on social media and in the press:

  • It wasn’t just a remarkable performance by Jones but rather the most remarkable quarterback performance we’ve ever seen. He should definitely turn pro even though he has started only three games in his college career.
  • Mariota, despite his awards, is bad enough to slip right out of the first round of the NFL Draft.
  • Manning? Well, he’s done, finished, kaput. Who cares that he’s one of the greatest players of all-time? He performed so badly that he should clearly be put out to pasture.

This is what happens when we lose perspective. We get reactionary and lose sight of history, trends, entire bodies of work, and reality in general.

. . .

We are so accustomed to this kind of response to sports we barely notice, and while it’s annoying, over-sensationalizing entertainment is not a problem in the grand scheme of things. But what about when we do the same thing in politics or in the church, when we react to the fall of a pastor into sin or lose our temper over a perceived misstep by the president? All of a sudden it’s more than annoying—it’s harmful.

A loss of perspective leads us into the most polarizing places . . .

Read the full post HERE.

photo credit: CraigInDenver via photopin cc

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