Monday, November 06, 2006

No gloating allowed

I want to gloat.

Another evangelical leader has been caught with his piety down. Another conservative spokesman who trumpets "family values" has damaged his own family, as well as his church family. Another "Christian leader" who talks the talk has shown he has clay feet when it comes to walking the walk.

I want to point fingers; I want to snicker behind my hands; I want to gloat.

But . . .

. . . he has publicly admitted his weakness and his sin, asking forgiveness. And Jesus tells me (doesn't ask me to think about it, but tells me to do it) that when a sister or brother asks forgiveness, we are to grant such forgiveness.

In another place, Jesus commands us to love. Again, it's not an option; it's a requirement for following him. And, as Paul reminds us (in Eugene Peterson's marvelous paraphrase of 1 Corinthians 13:6), love

'doesn't keep score of the sins of others,
doesn't revel when others grovel,
takes pleasure in the flowering of truth . . .'

And, of course, there is my sin, my dark side, my other self that I don't want anyone to see. An old Native American parable tells of theone who said, "I have two dogs fighting inside of me: one evil, the other good. Who will win? The one I feed the most." Until I can stop feeding the evil dog inside of me, I should not talk about someone else.

I want to gloat, but I can't.

(c) 2006 Thom M. Shuman


revsharkie said...

Good one.

My mom's comment on this situation was, "I'm sitting here reading about the latest guy to find out that being super religious won't make you straight."

Thought it was unfortunate, but typical, that the response of his church was "Get out." The church is the only army that shoots its wounded.

How much better off we'd all be if we'd pray for this man, his family, and also for the other man involved. What would Jesus do?

Anonymous said...

When are we all going to realize that the more judgmental and intolerant we are, the bigger the target grows for our own tempter.