Tuesday, November 14, 2006

It Usually Takes Me about a Week or So

Tonight after I finished my dinner and Tapioca pudding and while sipping on my coffee, I found myself thinking about ol' Ted. It's been about 10 days or so now since Ted Haggard was confronted and vilified for his 3-year long affair with a gay hustler and meth substance abuse. At present, you can read blogs about his hypocrisy, listen to a racy song about his demise (see earlier post), as well as read the new entry about him in Wikipedia.

This week, I've read even more blogs about him at The Huffington Post and The Revealer. And you know what? While I am almost as mad as everyone else is, I must admit my anger is subsiding a bit. I am probably more angry at a system that both allowed Haggard to do what he did as long as he 'towed the party line' as much as I am at the religion that continues to denigrate us gay and lesbian folk as the immoral bastards they think we are.

And the more I think about the religion that tied up Haggard and warped his mind, the more I am feeling a bit of pity for him. I guess feeling pity is a bit condecending, and I hate it when others do that with me, so I'll change 'pity' to 'feeling sorry for him.' His life is about to get so ugly that few would or should wish that upon even their harshest critics.

Ted may be going into some sort of reparitive therapy, which fails so often that the APA (as well as the American Assoc. of Pediatrics, the American Counseling Assoc., The American Pyschiatric Assoc., The American Psychologial Association, and The National Assoc. of Social Workers, to name a few) have declared such a practice to be a sham of the highest order. The APA has even gone so far as to actually affirm the worth and health of gay and lesbian parents, children, and other folk. The emotion turmoil and rollercoaster ride that Ted is going to face with his family and himself will be treacherous. He has already lost his job and probably his home too. His wife and kids may end up in some religious therapy session somewhere and, if Mark Driscoll has any say so, Ted's wife may even be put in therapy for causing this whole mess in the first place. (Driscoll wrote a post blaming pastor's wives who let themselves "go" and thereby causing their pastor husbands to look for "it" someplace else).

The evangelically religious spin-doctors and snake-oil salespersons (like NARTH) will be all over him like red ants at an Arizona barbeque. And, try as he might, he'll not find one person to whom he can say, "Will someone please love me as I am instead of on the condition of who you want me to become?"

The more I think about what his life is going to be like, the more embarrassed I feel for continuing to prod and poke him for his scandalous lifestyle (I know, I hate to use 'that word' too but it kind of fits with him, doesn't it?)

I am going to be mad at him for one more night, tonight, and then tomorrow I am going to start praying for him. Is it a sin to wait like that? The Gospel of Mark says, "If your brother sins against you and if he repents, you must forgive him." I guess I would be justified in waiting for his repentance but since he a) didn't particularly sin against me personally.. although he did in a rather metaphysical way that the Scriptures kind of address, and b) I don't want to wait and pray for him after all the crap he's going to go through. If I did, I'd be similarly guilty as the ones who won't help him until after he tells them that he's no longer a homosexual.

Honestly, he needs our prayers. And, of course my prayers may be a bit biased but hopefully I can say them in a way that honors the situation while not completely ignoring the hope that when God helps him, Ted will find a way out of his mess.

Heck, I'll start tonight. But I'll leave that other post up (minus the direct link to the catchy song) as a way of compromising my intentions.

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