It never crossed my mind that I would ever hear something of that nature; especially regarding members of our church staff. This church is relatively new; it started about 2 years ago and has been growing by leaps and bounds. The staff members have been so dedicated to establishing and serving this church congregation; it boggles my mind to know that two of those people (who are leaders in their respective positions) have done something that could jeopardize the church, to say nothing of their respective families.
I feel betrayed; I had placed my trust and faith in these people, and they have let me down. I realize that is a selfish thing to say - this affair is not about me. God has forgiven my many sins; which have been too frequently committed and not always sufficiently regretted. Shall I deny my forgiveness to these two, knowing that God has already forgiven them their sins? All I can say at present is that it will take a lot of time for me to heal.
When two people commit adultery, they are guilty of sin on more levels than just betrayal of their spouses. They lie about their actions or their whereabouts, they break their wedding vows, which are made not only to each other, but to God as well. In this particular case, they bear false witness, meaning they do not practice what they are preaching every week. How can you do that and continue to plan church services and purport to be a person who loves God?
The majority of us have ample opportunity to be unfaithful to our spouses. Most of us (I hope) do not act on those opportunities. Many of us stop to consider the devastation of our spouses, and almost more importantly - what it would do to our families, our children and our parents, to know that we are so weak we cannot resist temptation? Of course, we are tempted. Of course we fantasize about other men and women, but we do not act on those fantasies, or at least, we should not.
In my opinion, this case is worse than most - since their actions have not only had an impact on their families, but on everyone who attends the church and especially the staff. There are at least six children involved in these two families. How can it be explained to them? Children who are being brought up in church in the way that they are; almost totally immersed in the Bible with the ethics and morality that teaches us, will have a harder time understanding why their parents aren't living what they are supposed to believe in and what they preach. What terrible role models you have become for your children; especially the girls, who will have learned that men cannot be trusted to remain faithful.
Earlier this week, I was writing a post (not published yet) about the loss of innocence; about the time we come to full realization that the world is not as rosy as we once thought, when our parents, teachers, friends or politicians fall off the pedestals on which we have placed them. I thought that had happened to me in childhood, but today I find myself thinking it has happened again, and I am immensely sad about it. No one is perfect; not me, not you, and obviously not our religious leaders. But to my mind, it sure hurts a lot more when they show the world their imperfections. If you are so inclined, will you please pray for our church and its leaders?