Ray Rice: A Tale of 2 Cameras

Ray Rice: A Tale of 2 Cameras

One camera records in high definition. It costs hundreds of thousands of dollars and can zoom in on the smallest details from hundreds of yards. It moves as quickly as the football players that it follows, scrutinizing every cut, every sprint, every first down, every touchdown from 360-degree angles. It captures our public image.

Another camera cost a few bucks. The picture is grainy and the playback is choppy. It doesn’t zoom or pan… but it doesn’t miss anything. It records those private moments. It captures our personal issues.

In order to play running back in the NFL you must have the perfect balance of skill, discipline, and God-given talent. Ray Rice has all three. These three have contributed to a public image that has made him a hero. A larger than life figure who has built a following of fans and admirers, captured well by that first camera.

It takes the same amount of skill, discipline and ability to manage our personal issues. When we fail, we find out what that other camera is capable of capturing. The other camera pops up in the most unexpected places to capture our darkest secrets, our untamed habits, and our lapses of character.

What the other camera caught of Ray Rice was gruesome. Turn your head and wince gruesome. Our personal issues may not be this appalling, but we have them. If we fail to exercise the spiritual discipline necessary to tame our personal issues, the other camera is capable of sabotaging everything our public image has worked for.

I’ve heard that “character is who you are when no one is looking.” The problem is that someone is ALWAYS looking! In the information age that we live in, nothing that you meant to be private will remain private.

While we win the battle of X’s vs. O’s. We must also win the battle of Public Image vs. Personal Issues. These two are always at war. Sometimes we can get so caught up in what our public image has afforded us that we overlook the fact that our personal issues can sabotage the entire thing. Our private self must be strong enough to hold up our public self.

I don’t know if this is a habit for Ray Rice, or a temporary lapse in judgment. Only he and his new wife know. I pray for her sake that it is the former and let smarter people than me discuss engrained patterns of domestic violence.

My only contribution to the discussion is this reminder that both cameras are rolling. Don’t be so enamored with one that you neglect the other. Or in other words…

“…be sure your sins will find you out.” ~Numbers 32:23

What are your thoughts? How do you protect yourself from the other camera? Does this issue hit home?

  • Lamar Hazelton

    Good stuff. The private self is usually the real self. Thats why I think its important to pray for and pursue integrity. Sometimes we care more about the viewers of the public cameras than we do about the one Viewer that counts.

    September 9, 2014 at 1:43 PM
  • Renee Shaw

    This reminds me of the Donald Sterling incident. Further evidence that what’s done in the dark will come to the light. It is hard to balance two separate lives. In today’s world with camera phones and social media, the camera is always rolling.

    September 9, 2014 at 2:56 PM

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