Nearly a year after announcing his divorce from fellow Christian music artist Sandra McCracken, former Caedmon's Call vocalist Derek Webb has released a lengthy statement apologizing for his moral failures and urging other believers to seek help if they, too, are struggling with infidelity.
As reported by the Gospel Herald, the couple announced last April that their marriage of over 13 years was ending due to Webb's engaging in an extramarital affair. The announcement rocked the faith-based community, as Webb and McCracken were viewed as a power couple in the Christian music industry, successfully reaching both religious and secular audiences.
In a candid Facebook post shared on January 1, Webb, 41, opened up about the split for the first time, explaining that after a year of "personal health and growth," he believes it is "incongruent to leave the subject unaddressed publicly."
"The truth is, i cheated," the award-winning singer wrote in his post, repeated verbatim. "what started as a brief, inappropriate, and quickly confessed connection with a very old friend evolved quickly into something more serious, which was hidden from spouses and friends. it continued in secret for a matter of months, was eventually discovered, and set into motion the consequences that i will now live with for the rest of my life."
Webb explained that he believed lies, which led him to even more lies: "[T]his is why temptation is so tempting...as much as i wish i could, i simply cannot change what i've done, nor the resulting consequences. i can only own these despicable actions, which have left me completely devastated and deeply ashamed. sometimes, no matter how bad you want it or how hard you fight for it, broken things just can't be mended. the only path forward from here is to continue focusing on health & healing, my children & parents, and investing in safe community."
The singer went on to emphasize the importance of "having a handful, even just one or two safe people in your life with whom you can and do truly share everything, especially the hardest and most shameful things."
He continued, "i would plead with you to find a small group of safe men or women, friends who will not respond with platitudes of morality but will instead get down and not only join you but stay with you in your s***, in hopes of helping pull you out. inevitably, they'll need you to join them in theirs someday."
Webb encouraged those who may be tempted to commit adultery to remember that "what you think you want, what you think you can have, is not real, and you'll lose real things pursuing it. as an unfortunately and extremely reliable source, please believe me."
He added, "if you're standing on that steep ledge, STOP. DON'T DO IT. at very least, risk telling someone immediately and give opportunity to hearing some understanding and perspective, maybe some sanity restoring words that might be the small disruption needed to shake you awake. tell the whole truth and keep telling it. your marriage is worth it. your future is worth it."
The singer ended his message by acknowledging that the lyrics of his songs have been "eerily prophetic in my own story," noting in particular the line, "i am a whore, i do confess, but i put you on like a wedding dress and i run down the aisle."
"there has always been some measure of distance between me and the content of my songs...the accidentally prophetic sting of those songs is especially acute and painful in light of my great failures. songs like those have never been more difficult to sing, but i've never been more grateful to have to," he concluded.
"if i'm honest, most of the time i don't believe the words in my songs," he admitted. "i have a hard time believing in a God that could make, let alone love a man who could do such things. so, i'll go on reciting and adding to my liturgy in hopes of believing the words, because i wish to. more than ever, i wish to."