Thursday, January 29, 2009

Just some thoughts

I have to admit that I watched the Oprah interview with Ted Haggard and his wife.
I remember the story that was all over the news two years ago.......the name of God being smeared in the filth of the information that was coming out.
My heart was so burdened for the church.....so crushed for his wife.
I have known the disillusion of the church and its leaders- but hope never to have to go where his wife had to go. Can you even imagine this in your worst nightmare? In response to the news
their church leaders required that the leave their home, their state and their friends.
Still some helped them out along the way with places to stay.....but eventually they were on their own in this journey.
Can you even imagine being his wife......this woman of God who was asked to walk this road?
And can you believe that she stayed with Ted?
In my mind I don't know if that would have been the choice she made.
Praise God for her heart!

I guess the thing that hit me the most was the fact that Ted Haggard had gone for help years ago. Yes, he had gone to some spiritual advisers and told them that he was having a problem with thoughts about other men.
Their answer of help......work harder for the Lord.
Really.......I would like to smack this/these men. What fruit were they displaying here?
Not Godly fruit.
So instead of being able to get help when he confessed his sin...........they swept it under the carpet. And several years later.......satan got to throw the dirt in the face of Jesus.

We all have dirt. Little things about ourselves that we decide---I'll just deal with it myself...no one else need know.
God and I will deal with this and I will do better.
I have been there. But that is not what scripture tells us to do.
So why does scripture tell me to confess my sins to another?

James 5:16 (New International Version)

We live in a world that is very contagious. My inner man if not filled.....will begin to long after what it sees....even if I know that it is not right.
That is why I am told to resist it and it will have to flee.
I think that is what Ted Haggard was trying to do when he revealed his inner man to another.
But instead of that person believing the scripture and following it.......he leaned to his own understanding. Dear God forgive us.
Ted Haggard needed an eye to eye person. Someone who would have made sure he was getting help.....for Gods name sake.
And so I repeat....DO YOU HAVE AN EYE TO EYE PERSON?
And if you don't...what are you doing to find one? You may have to approach someone who you know to be a Godly woman. Maybe go to your pastor and tell him that you need a woman who will hold you accountable and could he help point you in the direction of a woman.
Those older women in the body.....that is their job.
And you older women (not just by age) who are you mentoring? It is not a choice....scripture tells us that that is what we are to be doing. And just to let you know...your eye to eye person does not have to be a mentor...........Just someone who walks in love and will hold you to what is right and true.
Bottom line...it is easy to hide who we are.
For years after getting out of the restaurant business I struggled with smoking.
I would quit and then times would get hard and I drifted back into the habit.
I knew it was not something that I should be doing to my temple....His body.
And yet, if no one knew.....it was easy to fade in and out of this horrible habit-a habit that I hated. The really horrible thing about this is that while I was doing it- I felt like such a hypocrite.
I never wanted to pretend that I was something that I was not.
Do I hand out the Word with hands coated with lies? It made me sick which pushed me further away from God.....I could not face Him.
So with the stress that happened in the last 8 months...what do you think reared it ugly head?
(Honesty......it is what is required for healing according to scripture.)
Yes, smoking.
I knew I needed an eye to eye person who saw this as I did....not someone who would pat me on the back and say, Well, we know everyone has their own struggles. They could not be "nice" about the whole thing-that would not help.
And God who promises us what we need.....He sent me one.
Right out of the blue I told her that I needed her to do something for me. I told her what my problem was.......you should have seen the shock on her face.....and asked her if she would hold me accountable. And she said, YES!
And you know what I found? She needed an eye to eye person too.
And so we are walking this thing out together.
And am I smoking now? Nope! And I haven't for awhile, because I am allowing God to fill and healing that area of my life. Could it still be an issue?
You had better believe it.......especially if I don't let God work in my life through the Spirit and my eye to eye person.
(Side note.......this friend was not the first person I went to to try and get help. I had gone to a group of Christians. After telling what was going on not one person stepped up to the plate. And that is o.k.....God had a certain one in mind. And so I continued my search.)

Years ago I would not have shared this because of the judgment that would come.
At this point in my life........that really does not matter to me anymore. I hope that God has wrung that out of my life for good......He taught me a lot after what we went through in our last church.
Why am I free of that fear? Because I know He loves me....and I know that the ones who have tasted that love will not dare go there.
Honesty guys...admitting that we all have issues! That we have not arrived at perfection....we are still a work in progress.
It is what's required to walk this thing out as He wants us to.
It is the thing that will bring healing.
What might have happened years ago if someone had come alongside Ted and his wife and walked this thing out according to scripture?
Think of all the hearts that would have been saved from heart break.

Thanks for listening.
Are you an eye to eye person for someone?

*Biblegateway.com

13 comments:

Deanna said...

James 5:16 has been the Lord's healing touch upon my heart many a times.

Blessings dear friend,
Deanna

Denise said...

Amen, you are so right my friend.

Shirley said...

Dear Sharon,
I so admire you for the woman of God that you truly are. I can honestly say that I love you in Christ. You have touched my heart. I don't have the problem that you have, but I do have issues. I agree with you wholeheartedly. You make me feel somehow a closeness to you. God will surely bless you for your open heart and honestly.

I thank God for leading me to your blog.....God is so good.

Love in Christ.

Halfmoon Girl said...

AMEN! I love this post. It is so hard to speak our sin outloud, but the Word tells us that our tempations are not uncommon to man. Everyone has the same stuff going on, just in different forms. Problem is, there seems to be a few sins that are huge NO NOs and judgement is rained down if the people involved are not spiritually mature. A lot of damage can be done that way. I admire your honesty. It encourages others to be transparent as well. How was the interview overall- I imagine this could be a really hot topic- were they able to explain why homosexuality was a problem for them, or were they condemned for not embracing it? Churches have a long way to go in helping our fallen leaders...

grey like snuffie said...

I've had the privilege of praying with several ladies over temptations, thoughts and sins that they were SO afraid to share. It was SO AMAZING to watch God work. Give Him the glory...we all know that we're not perfect but we do try and fit in the little Christian box.

Sandi said...

I don't know anything about this Ted guy but what you say is so true. We all need someone to hold us up.

Mary said...

Sharon,

What a wonderful post. I too struggle with the demon smoking. I hate it. I have tried dozens of times to quit and each time something happens, it rears (in your words) its ugly head. The most recent time it did this was when Aunt May died. And there I go again...

I don't have an eye to eye person, as I've had too many problems in churches and no longer attend. I need someone to keep me accountable. Any volunteers? *hint* For I know that smoking is something that defiles the temple.

Just thought I'd let you know that you aren't the only one who has this problem. We all fall short of the glory of God.

Have a wonderful day.
Blessings,
Mary

Denise said...

We never know who's lives we will touch when we come to the honesty of our own lives........ God is a healing God and our testimony frees others to also be struggling. When others have an air of perfection we draw back because we cannot get there.. It is in the Grace that we live, and not something that we have attained. I have my issues and does everyone....... I have tried to hide a lot in my life many years ago, but the Lord is drawing me out........

I will pray about the smoking and I will rejoice with you that you are walking in freedom from it today..

Holly said...

Oh, friend, what a beautiful heart you have. Living wide open and looking for the Lord in all cases...I love that about you, Sharon!

I have an eye to eye friend and I am one. But even so, intentionality about it is important!

Love and prayers for you,
Holly

luvmy4sons said...

Such wisdom in this post. So much I could say. I have a dear friend whose husband cheated on her through on line chat rooms etc...she found out, they went through counseling...ten years later he was arrested for his conversation in a chat room with an undercover cop posing as a teen. That was a few months ago. She STILL stayed with him. And they too discovered that he never had anyone eye to eye to hold him accountable as the reason for his slip back into old habits. Now he goes to a support group of men who all struggle with the Internet and women. It is so important, but not so easy to find a Christian who willl support and not judge, yet be gently firm and hold you accountable asking the hard questions and not abandoning you with time. This is something someone I love is finding out about in his area of difficulty recently too...Great post! With God all things are possible but we must seek His wisdom to do it!

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

Fabulous post, Sharon. You've got your issues, I got mine. Thank God for the hem of his garment that allows us our grip of redemption. Honestly, I'm getting too old to worry so much about what others think about my past and/or present. What matters to me is what God thinks; he is the true measure of all things.

Love this.

peace~elaine

Staceystace said...

This is so true...for some of us who have been burned in "accountability" it is very difficult to open up again, but so vital.

SunnySusan said...

Oh my girl...did this hit the nail on the head....that is what I was thinking...what was wrong with that "spiritual person" that did not counsel him and be an eye to eye person for him....that was 2 years before all &^%$ broke loose. He could have been healing all that time....
I do not have an acountabillity partner...I do want one....seems girls at my church do not want to open up...
Bless you ...