As I'm sure many others have done, I've followed the story about Pastor Ted Haggard of New Life Church in Colorado Springs. My heart breaks over devastation done to his relationship with Christ, his family, his church, and the National Association of Evangelicals of which he was the president.
I watched with some Christian pride at how it was handled by the Board of Elders to which Mr. Haggard answers. No big to-do. No big finger pointing. It was immediately, openly, honestly addressed. They demanded he step down but they "closed ranks" around him as his period of correction and restoration began. It appeared the Biblical "system" worked despite the backlash and opinions of the general public.
So, I found myself more than a little irritated by today's syndicated article from Miami Herald columnist Leonard Pitts. Now, I read him regularly despite his apparently socially liberal beliefs since he is one of only a few national columnists that our little local paper publishes. He was comparing the "outing" of actor Neil Patrick Harris (of "Doogie Houser" fame) as a homosexual and the "outing" of Ted Haggard's self-described sexual immorality. Pitts feels that at this point in time he would rather be Harris rather than Haggard.
But, what I found so irritating is how sarcastically and disrespectfully he addressed the handling of Mr. Haggard's situation...(the bold is my emphasis)
"On Nov. 2, Haggard stepped down from the NAE presidency. Two days later, his church fired him. He has confessed to ''sexual immorality'' and will spend the next three to five years in ''restoration,'' a process that reportedly involves confrontation, counsel and – you can’t make this stuff up -- rebuke from `'godly men.' "
What's to be made up? Why is "godly men" in quotes? That is how the Bible system is designed and instructed to work.
"This all raises two questions. One: Between this guy (Haggard) , the late gay-bashing former Spokane mayor, James West, Pat Robertson biographer Mel White, and Michael Bussee and Gary Cooper, leaders in the ''curing homosexuality'' movement until they fell in love with one another, can't we now safely assume that any conservative who rants about the homosexual agenda is a lying hypocrite gayer than a Castro Street bar? And, two: Wouldn't you much rather be Neil Patrick Harris than Ted Haggard just now? In other words, wouldn’t you rather be a content gay man living life to the fullest, than a closeted gay hypocrite living lies to the fullest? Especially since lies are so frequently found out."
So conservatives are never to be believed ever again? All of us are hypocrites? So, there's no overgeneralization by Pitts here? So I guess I'll stand up and say, no, I still wouldn't want to be a content gay person rather than someone seeking God's correction to return to His will for me.