Elisabeth Hasselbeck was a host on The View for ten years. She left the show last July and no one really knows if it was her decision or if she was fired. She accepted a job as a co-host for Fox and Friends, a morning news show. Her conservative opinions have been the subject of news reports, entertainment gossip and late night talk show jokes. That is why I think Elisabeth Hasselbeck is someone worth watching.
I was channel surfing one Saturday and ran across an interview with Elisabeth Hasselbeck on the E! Network. I would have continued to “surf” except I heard the interviewer ask why she was no longer on The View, and I wanted to hear her answer. Hasselbeck avoided a direct answer but said: “It doesn’t do justice to the value of that decade to only look at the last few moments and why and what happened, because it was an incredible time. However, I’m also thankful that I don’t have to have the concern anymore that my kids will see someone almost punished, in a way, for having an opinion.”
Elisabeth Hasselbeck is a conservative who speaks out on issues like abortion, homosexuality and traditional faith values. She has actively spoken about her political views and her candidate preferences. I’ve not researched every word she has spoken, and she was quick to say in the E! interview that she would love the chance to “re-phrase” some of the things she has said. For the most part, I think I would enjoy the chance to know her and I think we would probably have a lot in common. (Including that “re-phrase” comment!)
As a Christian, I think it will be important to watch the way the world responds to Elisabeth Hasselbeck and her opinions. She is one of the few people on television that voices a more conservative viewpoint and the world’s response to her may indicate what other Christians should be prepared for as well. If the culture is attacking Elisabeth Hasselbeck’s point of view, we should expect some of the same treatment.
Hasselbeck said she was glad that her children wouldn’t have to see her punished for having an opinion. But she may have spoken those words too soon. Conservative values are under fire, and so are the people who choose to defend those values.
Jim has recently written a paper titled, Respected to Irrelevant to Dangerous: Does religion poison everything?, that speaks to this very subject. We have been called to respond to the cultural trends with biblical values. One of the most disturbing trends we are aware of is the increased persecution of those who uphold traditional Christian values.
Jesus told his disciples, “Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also” (John 15:20). He also said, “I have told you these things so that in me you might have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
I was blessed to live during a time in history when Christian values were respected and admired, even by most of those who didn’t choose to live by those values. I’m not sure my granddaughter will be able to say the same thing. But, Jesus never promised that serving him would be easy, in fact, he said the opposite would be true.
I think it is time to get prepared. Are you prepared to give an answer for the hope that is in you? (1 Peter 3:15) Are we ready to be more than conquerors through him who loved us? (Romans 8:37) We will need to remember, “Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because he will receive the crown of life that God promised to those who love him” (James 1:12).
God didn’t promise that the world would embrace our values. Instead, God promised that he would reward and bless those who loved him enough to live firmly and openly with those values. Keep your eyes on Elisabeth Hasselbeck, but make sure to fix your eyes on Jesus as well. Faithful Christians will need to be spiritually strong for the days ahead. But – cultural trends are temporary and belong to this world. Thankfully, Christians are eternal and we belong to Jesus. He has made a home for us in heaven. Stand firm and accept whatever comes with speaking the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15). The real consequence for that lifestyle is blessing.