In A Twisted Way, Rapinoe Knows There is a God by trying to Cancel Him.
Often, the true character of someone is most evident when faced with adversity. How they respond and what lesson is learned from the struggle tells us a lot about the person they truly are. Difficulties come to all of us at some point during our lives, and they are a blessing in disguise meant to purify us like gold tested in fire. How we respond will make all the difference.
Consider the tale of pink-haired, leftist, LGBTQ poster girl and soccer player Megan Rapinoe, who tore her Achilles six minutes into what was to be her last match. No one was around her, no one kicked her, and whatever happened appeared to be her lack of strength and training. Instead of accepting responsibility for this injury as a professional athlete whose sole job is to prepare themselves physically, she, on the world stage, declared there was no God. In a press conference after the game, Rapinoe opined, “I’m not a religious person or anything and if there was a God, like, this is proof that there isn’t.”
Rapinoe’s disrespectful remarks garnered all kinds of righteous pushback. But the most notable was from Carrie Prejean Boller, a former model and beauty pageant contestant who is now a Christian activist. In an interview with Megyn Kelly, Boller said, “I think that is proof that there is a God because he brought you to your knees…when nobody else was around you. So, maybe while you’re resting, you open your Bible and you repent your sins.”
One also might surmise that Rapinoe doth protest too much. Perhaps somewhere deep inside her is a child-like understanding that God loves and cares for her. Perhaps her roots growing up in a conservation northern California town were somehow reignited, and her conscience pricked after this incident. Rapinoe, like all of us, has the opportunity to repent and return to the loving arms of God our Father. Let’s pray she uses this hardship to do just that.
Contrast Rapinoe’s response with that of Dean Gregory. Gregory is the father of the beautiful baby, Indi Gregory, who was denied life-saving care in the UK even though the Bambino Gesu Hospital in Rome was willing and able to treat her. The death panels in the UK judicial system decided to place Indi in hospice and pull the plug on her life support. She died shortly after that in the arms of her mother.
Like Rapinoe, Indi’s father, Dean Gregory, said he was not religious. But this is where the similarity between them ends. In an interview with an Italian newspaper, Gregory said, “I am not a religious person and I am not baptized. It felt like I had been dragged to hell…It was like the devil was there. If hell exists then heaven must exist. If there’s a devil, God must exist…and I want Indi to go to heaven.” Due to the influence of a Christian volunteer who had been visiting Indi every day in the hospital, the family consented to have little Indi baptized before her death. Now, Dean Gregory has also decided to be baptized himself. May they be reunited in eternity. Baby Indi, through her sacrifice and death, has, in essence, saved her father.
Unlike many who turn away from God in times of adversity, Gregory was open to the graces that flowed from his suffering. He embraced the pain only to find himself finally at peace with a new-found faith, albeit a childlike understanding of heaven and hell. Rapinoe, on the other hand, being so wrapped up in herself, cannot see past her accomplishments, never realizing how God has blessed her with incredible athletic ability. Remember when she screamed, “I deserve this?” while holding a World Cup Trophy? It seems pride does cometh before the fall – literally.
No one is spared from adversity as we all have our crosses the bear. Use these difficulties, and the grace poured out to purify yourself and grow closer to God. Rejoice in your trials as all the saints and martyrs before us did.
Ponder this from St. Peter:
In this you rejoice, although now for a little while you may have to suffer through various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold that is perishable even though tested by fire, may prove to be for praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 1:6-7