“More than most Westerners, Americans believe — deeply, madly, truly — in the sanctity of marriage. But we also have some of the most liberal divorce laws in the developed world, and one of the highest divorce rates. We sentimentalize the family, but boast one of the highest rates of unwed births. We’re more pro-life than Europeans, but we tolerate a much more permissive abortion regime than countries like Germany or France. We wring our hands over stem cell research, but our fertility clinics are among the least regulated in the world.
In other words, we’re conservative right up until the moment that it costs us.”
One wonders, furthermore, how much this kind of weak will applies to the church in its own right. How often do we vouch for conservative theological ideals, only to flinch at the last moment, leaving someone else to fight the battle, someone else to do the hard work of ministry, whatever form it may take? Douthat’s words are worth thinking over both in a cultural sense and a kingdom sense.