Tuesday, January 30, 2007

God Can Use Anyone...

Most likely, only a few people will hear about this new development. Why? Because it is not as "titillating" and "racy" as the original story. In fact, I predict that most of the MSM will ignore it.


Could it be because it would put Christians in a good light and we can't have that?

Could it be that the secular progressive owners of the MSM simply enjoyed imagining that most evangelical Christians were either squirming or running for the comfort of closed doors in the midst of a scandal so big that it now generates more than 1 million google sites when the man's name is typed in?

Could it be that after the dirty scandal was revealed, the MSM desired that the pain and misery inflicted upon the Christian community should remain that way?

Most people, by now will recognize that I am referring to the Ted Haggard story. The MSM (and probably the election results)had a field day with that one. Who could blame them? Perhaps many "disenfranchised Christians" stayed home because of it? Personally, I doubt it but I suppose that someone will eventually get around to doing a survey to find out.

A few posts ago, I talked about how God wants to use a "nevertheless" within our broken experiences in life. This post describes an example of that.

Recently, an AP article titled Ted Haggard's Accuser Visits New Life Church appeared in several newspapers across the country. Admittedly, I may have missed it, but I don't think that I have seen this topic discussed on any recent news broadcasts. After reading it, I think that you might see why.

Mike Jones, a gay male prostitute that had just outed their beloved pastor, Ted Haggard, was warmly welcomed and had this to say:

“I had read a lot about the church, but there’s nothing like seeing it for yourself,” Jones told the paper. “It wasn’t to rub anyone’s face in it by any means. I was wanting to get some perspective, to see where they are coming from, what the magnet is.”

He wanted to see "what the magnet is." Interesting comment, don't you think? Christians already know Who the magnet is. Wouldn't it be wonderful if Mike Jones discovered Him through all this controversy?

At my message board, a commenter asked this:

…Of the many ecclesiastic scandals in the past five years, the ‘false’ preachers, teachers, lay people, etc. had been protected by other believers, not revealed by them. That task has fallen mostly to outsiders. I’ve yet to hear a prominent Christian declare, for example, that ‘outing’ Ted Haggard was beneficial to the Body of Christ. I certainly haven’t heard it from you.

My answer?

It's a given that Haggard should have been outed! And yes, he should be removed from any leadership position at the church as well as elsewhere in the Christian community. This is biblical procedure set down in the book of Acts!

My friend Stephen Bennett, who runs a ministry to help homosexuals find Christ, was previously involved in the homosexual lifestyle over ten years ago. Upon giving his life to Christ, he left that life behind. He is now married with two children. Shortly after this scandal broke, he appeared on CNN Headline News and stated (paraphrased here) that "someone is lying and the truth needs to come out." He agreed with the gay prostitute, in that respect.

One point that I was making by drawing your attention to that article is that the congregation was more interested in the truth than in any image that their fallen pastor may have wanted to maintain. The second point is that Christians are a forgiving community. We know that "all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." That is precisely why He sent his Son...to achieve that which we could never do on our own.

Of course, the MSM hasn't broadcasted this development over the airwaves. It's just not as sensational as when the scandal first broke.

But if more people knew about it, wouldn't they have to admit the genuineness of that Christian community?

My question is, couldn't that congregation have easily been bitter and angry at the gay prostitute for what he did? That may have been the final and permanent reaction of most people. Instead, they welcomed him warmly into their church and actually thanked him for his role in exposing Haggard. The truth wins the day for genuine believers...no matter how painful the process might be.

Plus, who knows? Perhaps a "seed" of the gospel of Christ has been planted for the future salvation of Mike Jones...

One day, I'm sure that we will read an article that Ted and his family have returned to the church to thank the congregation for their forgiveness, mercy and grace bestowed upon him and his family, despite all the hurt and harm such a public affair caused for not only that church, but Christians everywhere.

This is just another example of God turning that, which was meant to harm His Body of followers, into something good.

Genesis 50:20 - "But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive." NKJV

God can use anyone...for an ultimate good.


limpy99 said...

I think I should point out that while condemning the mass media for igonoring the story, you are citing from an Associated Press report that appeared, to quote your post, in "several" newspapers, and you link to MSNBC.com.

Christinewjc said...

Yeah Limpy...it's a blizzard of info...all 718 google search results worth. How many are newspaper article related? How many are TV broadcast related? At just a glance, it appears that the info is more prominent on conservative blogs than anywhere else.

Let's see...1 million 1 hundred google search results for the scandal revelation. 718 for this positive story.

No wait! Only the top three results mention this actual story! The other 715 are dedicated to the continuation of ripping apart Ted Haggard!

Hmmm...you're right! The mass media isn't ignoring the story!


Christinewjc said...

Ah yes! Here we go...blogs to the rescue! All 72 links worth!

Mark Pritchard said...

I don't think it would be possible for a congregation like New Life Church to "turn bitter and angry" after an incident like the Haggard disaster. Anyone who was angry about the incident would leave; the only people left would be the ones who blithely accept the management's line on the matter and say to each other "Let's not judge poor Ted."

As for Mike Jones, the whole thing is a no-lose situation as far as New Life is concerned. If he undergoes a tearful conversion, they win. If he goes away and is never heard from again, they win. If he continues sniping from the sidelines, they still win.

And what do you care if the MSM cover the story? Again, you are in a no-lose situation: If they cover the story, you win. If they don't cover the story, you can criticize them and you still win.

I think you should relax. Christians know the ending of the story, right? What is there to worry about?