I've been getting lots of feedback about my post earlier this week regarding the talk by Ted and Gayle Haggard. Some of it you've seen by way of comments, and some has come on Twitter or by email. What follows is an email I received with a unique perspective. I asked the writer for permission to share it with you...
I just read your blog through a link on my Facebook site from a friend. I was one of those people who initially felt betrayed by Ted and Gayle as I was a new Christian and had come to love Ted and Gayle and the Church they had built. It was where my wife, myself and two of my four children found a relationship with Christ. It was also ironic that it was where I found the courage to overcome my struggle with sexual immorality and pornography. I ended up leading small group discussions for members of the church group (males only) that were trying to overcome the same addictions.
As a result of Ted’s choices, I realized how hurt I was. The hypocrisy ran deep in the church and the person who seeded the church did in fact betray us and let us down. The irony of this was that a maturity came from this incident that I believe healed the church. Ted was asked to leave…that was wrong. He and Gayle would have been the first ones to pick up a member of the church and dust them off. That betrayal was to the Christian belief in principal, that we really weren’t as far along in our walk with the Lord as we may have thought or would like to think.
Some maturity that came from this experience for myself (and my family…from what we discuss). We learned to love the Lord, put faith in his Word and not the person who was speaking it. We don’t judge so quickly when one falls, and we are also not fast to show grace to those held at a higher standard of moral posture. We have grown to love the Lord, and our children understand that they are to show grace to all because they understand first hand, even the strong do in fact grow weary and weak.
We also know to accept responsibility for our own actions and choices and not try to portray them as something that happened to us, but rather something we chose to accept the potential consequences of by proceeding with the specific action when other choices were present.
Thanks for the reminder…we are going to be teaching our third child these lessons so his walk with the lord is not compromised by the irresponsibility of another’s poor choice.
By the way Ted Haggard…we long ago forgave you for the uncharacteristic lack of character you displayed while struggling with the poor choices you made. We wish you Gods power and promise you taught us to love. To Gayle…continue to be the example of grace to those who are so quick to pass and cast judgment. You have been an example to all.