Monday, August 27, 2012

Giving Credit Where Credit's Due

I find myself in a particular position quite often -- being praised for something glorious I am presenting. 


And for a second, it seems both unnecessary and unappealing to give credit to the person on my team who is actually responsible for it being so glorious. 

It's a delicate balance of knowing when it's okay to just say "thank you" and when it's absolutely critical that I say "thank you, all credit goes to Brandon."  

When is it okay to take credit and when is it not?

My favorite athletes are always the ones who give some shout out to God.  It's just nice to see someone with so much to be proud of still humbled by his accomplishments.

posted on Friday a view on Lance Armstrong's fall from fame. 
I remember a long time ago my dad read his biography and we spent a car ride talking about it on our way to ski (when Dad and I have had some of my favorite conversations of all time). 
It was impressive to say the least. 
I mean here is someone who survived and overcame more than about anyone else who comes to mind, and rose to a position of American royalty.

But he didn't give any credit to God, or in any way alluded to the presence of a higher power. 

Now, having said that, I am certainly not saying that is why he has fallen from the high places.

But I do respect a passage of scripture and try to keep it in front of me as I go about my days.

Daniel 4: 28-33
But all these things did happen to King Nebuchadnezzar.  12 months later, he was taking a walk on the flat roof of the royal palace in Babylon.  As he looked out across the city, he said, 'Just look at this great city of Babylon! I, by my own mighty power, have built this beautiful city as my royal residence and as an expression of my royal splendor.'
While he was still speaking these words, a voice called down from heaven, 'O King Nebuchadnezzar, this message is for you! You are no longer ruler of this kingdom.  You will be driven from human society.  You will live in the fields with the wild animals, and you will eat grass like a cow. Seven periods of time will pass while you live this way, until you learn that the Most High rules over the kingdoms of the world and gives them to anyone He chooses.'

The good news, is Nebuchadnezzar gained much wisdom and made a reformation after suffering his sentence. He rebounded a humble man.

I am not saying that God stripped Lance of his status. I have no idea how things happen in that regard or that realm on an event by event basis.  But I am saying that He sure might strip away anything I think I have accomplished, if I yield to the foolish attitude of thinking that I am the one who has made something happen. 

Does that mean that I say "thank you, all credit goes to God" when I am sharing a data analysis with my client? I don't think that's what God expects us to do.  But give credit where credit is due. Remember that when "all the stars seem to align," and something goes in your favor, that there is someone greater who created those aligned stars.  And that we are blessed because He loves us and wants us to be.

Now, I am hoping and waiting for Lance to be redeemed as the greatest cyclist of all time. 
Besides, whoever they hand his trophies to was probably taking the same potient, if any.

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