I read an article that asked: Why is there gay conversion in the church, but not adultery conversion? For the record, I’m not a proponent of gay conversion. However, the author of the article, Abydenus, brings up a valid point. (Full article here: http://bit.ly/2mF3msz.) Even better: How about a side of aversion to go with your conversion?
Infidelity is one of the most common and insidious acts within churches, large or small. Whether adultery by a member of the congregation or one of the cloth, it’s an equal opportunity fall from grace. Yet the circumstance is addressed briefly and then brushed aside unless someone starts slinging mud across the pews. When hymnals start flying everyone takes notice. I imagine after an adultery reveal (and the emotional onslaught) there are confessions, heartfelt apologies and spiritual counselors at the ready; nonetheless, these actions don’t seem to fully express the attention and consequences infidelity deserves. And infidelity demands a lot of attention. If a conversion of the other sort is an all-out assault to banish the person of his/her perceived evil, why isn’t infidelity given ample time and consideration?
According to some statistics, 90% of the persons in the United States are of the opinion that infidelity is morally wrong. My place is not to say infidelity is a sin, but I do know the after-effects can be devastating. Reactions to betrayal can easily cause people to act out in evil ways: acute rage, dismemberment, murder, etc. This is not perceived. It’s. Absolutely. Real. High emotion does not wait for platitudes and divine intervention. It moves any darn way it sees fit in the heat of a traumatic moment. Sacred surroundings be damned.
So how many Hail Marys, or recitation of Bible verses does it take to absolve one of their adverse behavior? How many acts of contrition or charitable gifts will make amends to the betrayed spouse and family? I understand pastors step down from the pulpit for the sake of the community, but for those implicated – have lessons been learned? Is true enlightenment to be gained solely through prayer, rote admonishments and burying the matter?
Infidelity is not one-size-fits-all. Each individual involved has a personal backstory that is carried into the relationship. These stories warrant a proper, thorough, and nonjudgmental examination. It would benefit everyone if a more proactive approach toward infidelity prevention was implemented.
Bible study has its place, but Human study is of equal importance. A great deal is taught about respect, reverence, and relinquishing. Well, how ’bout respect for self, reverence for the common good, and relinquishing unhealthy behavior?
True, not simple to accomplish, but it is simpler to seek assistance through established and appropriate counseling before having to kneel at the altar and pray fervently for forgiveness.
It proves easier on the spirit, heart–and knees.