You may have heard of an event called "8/28: Restoring Honor" that was held by Glenn Beck this past weekend at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington. However, unless you consistently listen to Glenn on his daily radio program or watch his Fox News program you have probably not heard the truth about it. And if you rely on the mainstream media for your news then you definitely haven't heard the truth about it. And if you didn't see it for yourself you can't understand it.
Prior to the event, the Left was predicting that it would be an angry, racist, hate-filled frenzy of politically-motivated "teabaggers". Al Sharpton even led a counter-rally nearby and accused Glenn of hijacking the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. who gave his famous "I Have a Dream" speech at the Lincoln Memorial forty-seven years ago.
We've come to expect this kind of rhetoric and hysteria from the Left. And each time they scream "Racist, hate-monger!" it becomes a little less believable. Think Chicken Little.
What is most distressing to me is the reaction of the so-called Christian Right. Some Christian leaders can't wait to condemn Beck to hell (he's a Mormon) and decry the Restoring Honor event as heresy. This column by Dr. Russell Moore is a perfect example of the judgemental nature and willful ignorance of some Christian leaders. I dare say Dr. Moore probably doesn't regularly watch or listen to Beck for if he did he would know that Glenn is very careful to say that he is not a theologian and that he is aware many Christians do not consider him to be one. He does not attempt to sway his viewers and listeners to his particular faith and in fact, vigorously insists that they search out the truth for themselves and encourages them to be very sure of what they believe. Dr. Moore also seems to be guilty of the very same elitist attitude that we all despise in the Left--that people are too stupid (or gullible) to decide anything for themselves. They must be told what is right and best for them. Apparently Dr. Moore thinks that it's his responsiblity to convict peoples' hearts rather than the Holy Spirit.
Now, if I haven't quite stepped on your toes enough...
I also happen to believe that Glenn Beck IS a Christian. (Gasp!)
I grew up in the Southern Baptist church and in fact I'm the daughter of a minister. I saw all the anti-Mormon propaganda growing up and believed it for many years. Now, don't misunderstand me. I do not subscribe to their theology. I disagree vehemently with many tenets of their faith. But what I have finally come to understand is that it is not my place to judge the effectiveness of someone's faith nor their sincerity. Glenn has very plainly stated on many occasions that Jesus Christ is his Lord and Savior. That's good enough for me. I also examine the fruit produced in his life just like Jesus says in Matthew 7:18-20. I am greatly encouraged that God can take an alchoholic, self-professed "dirt bag" and turn him into a man of great courage, honor, integrity, love, kindess and generosity. I do agree with Dr. Moore that today's American church presents a warm, fuzzy, watered-down, inoffensive gospel. And isn't it just like God to "choose the foolish things of the world [a Mormon!!!] to shame the wise" ?! (1 Cor 1 :27) And I will also tell you that the Spirit that lives in me recognizes the Spirit that lives in Glenn. Feel free to judge me too. I answer to my Jesus and no one else.
Bottom line, the Restoring Honor event was a multi-faith event that honored our military heroes and encouraged people of all faiths to join together on the issues that we can agree on--faith, hope, charity and honor. It really doesn't matter if you or I believe Beck to be a "true" Christian--that's between him and the Lord.