I normally don’t write about things like these but I felt I had to add my voice to the many who are praying for Ted Haggard, New Life Church, and those closest to him who are affected by the situation.

Sin has a way of consuming us. It normally starts with a small pleasure driven situation where our judgment has weakened. It then progresses into an action that is caused by sinful tendencies. After enough times of acting out in the sin, it leads to an ingrained habit that weakens our judgment. Habits consequently lead to a lifestyle or character. The end result is a destiny.

I’m not here to point my finger at Ted Haggard. My big idea is actually for us to point the finger at ourselves and ask ourselves how we’re doing. My pastor asks this statement when issues like moral failure come up: “Is there anything you are doing today that could be a source of pain or hurt to people in the future?” If there is any such thing we must strain it out of our lives.

Sometimes we think that our leaders never struggle with anything, not realizing that they may be the greatest target by the enemy. “How the mighty have fallen!” That statement should force us to look at ourselves. A key to our Christianity is accepting struggle within ourselves and coming desperately before God in our depravity. I know in my life that my biggest enemy is myself. Yes, circumstances come up and temptations are always an issue, but for me my struggle has everything to do with how things are in my heart.

It is a sobering thought, but the sad truth is that sin can and will happen to all of us. We will all make mistakes, but the key is running back to the Father’s arms and being open, honest, and vulnerable before Him. The other thing we need to realize is that when we isolate ourselves we set ourselves up for failure. The key to the Christian life is relationships. We live in relationship with the Father but also in relationship to those around us. When we isolate ourselves we warp our thinking of ourselves and our desperate need to be in community to thrive.

So what do we do in times like these when leaders fall? We remain faithful, pure, trustworthy, and obedient to the responsibility the LORD has entrusted to us. We must realize our need for the saving grace of God working daily in our lives, and we must realize the need to learn from those around us. We must not overlook the facts nor must be be high handed. We must carefully weigh our thoughts and become more and more like Jesus. We must learn to pray for those in leadership and love the sinner and hate the sin.

I’m praying for Ted Haggard and the New Life Church community…I would ask you to do so as well.

Ashish Joy