No one has missed the story, and if you have, you won't have to travel far to get caught up. I speak of the news story on Ted Haggard's exposure. I feel compelled to write on this topic not to continue the debate or to further rebuke the man but to write on truths that this has brought up for my life.
In his statement to New Life Church , Ted wrote the following: “The public person I was wasn’t a lie; it was just incomplete. When I stopped communicating about my problems, the darkness increased and finally dominated me. As a result, I did things that were contrary to everything I believe.” What an incredibly true statement for all of us to contemplate!
I know the dark places of my life. I know the things that I keep to myself. I know what happens when I don't expose those things to the truth of Christ. I know what happens when I don't share those things with spiritual friends and mentors. I know what happens. I know the dark, ugliness that resides in my flesh when I am not walking in the Spirit. I know where Ted has been and is.
I am no different from this man. My sins are no different from his. The ugliness in him is the same ugliness in me. This is why I am thankful for a grace giving God who loves me even in the midst of all my ugliness and a God who has forgiven all that ugliness.
As a few of us sat prayed for Ted and New Life the other night, God brought me to Psalm 33. It is a good reminder that our hope and our strength come from the Lord and not of our own powers. I hope that you will be encouraged by these verses:
"From heaven the LORD looks down and sees all humankind;
from his dwelling place he watches all who live on earth—he who forms the hearts of all, who considers everything they do.
No king is saved by the size of his army; no warrior escapes by his great strength.
A horse is a vain hope for deliverance; despite all its great strength it cannot save.
But the eyes of the LORD are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,
to deliver them from death and keep them alive in famine.
We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield.
In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name.
May your unfailing love be with us, LORD, even as we put our hope in you" (v13-22).