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03-20-2016 05:49 PM
Terry
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
One significant roadblock I have met again and again in my past attempts to get my family out of the LC deals with feeling the spirit. Some have said to me that the LC is the only place they have felt the spirit, or that their feelings confirm the presence and oneness of spirit within the group. It appears that this is still a stumbling block for us as we are finally departing.
For your husband to be willing to depart, his conscience must have been bothered for some time. Just because someone has a truthful yet negative account of the local churches, even if believed wouldn't be enough for a brother be willing to leave.
"Feeling the Spirit" appears to be an emotional response to some of the local church practices. I have firmly believed a brother or sister can be in spirit silently. They don't need to be loud and verbally expressive in order to be seen as "one in their spirit".
03-13-2016 10:38 PM
JJ
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewManLiving View Post
Don't mean to imply that there is no feeling. Joy is certainly a feeling or emotion. Feelings of joy and a deep sense of the presence of the Lord encourage us to go on and run the race. But I mean something different. The best way to describe it is to use an example. Stephen was full of the Holy Spirit and looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God. However he was also being bludgeoned to death. So feelings become irrelevant under such extreme conditions. But I often wonder what he actually felt. Did he even feel any of the stones bashing at him while he gazed at the glory of God??
Sorry, I can't answer that one NewManLiving from experience. My guess is that Stephen's flesh felt the "momentary lightness of affliction", just as Jesus felt the flogging, his crucifixion, and the thorny crown. But, his (Stephen's) spirit and soul were filled with the joy of the Holy Spirit. And, the momentary lightness of Stephen's affliction at his stoning won't compare to the eternal weight of glory to be revealed upon him at Jesus' second coming.
03-12-2016 04:15 PM
NewManLiving
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by JJ View Post
I generally agree that focusing on feeling (or even on "my spirit" as is taught in LC) versus turning our hearts to behold our glorious Lord himself is a mistake.

I recall an instance that describes something of a feeling in the New Testament, but most translations don't use the word feeling (a few do):

Luke 24:32 They said to one another, “Were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us on the road, while He was explaining the Scriptures to us?” (New American Standard Version)

I think we can relate to this. When the Lord opens the scripture to us, and sometimes it is through other believers, sometimes directly, our hearts can burn within.
Don't mean to imply that there is no feeling. Joy is certainly a feeling or emotion. Feelings of joy and a deep sense of the presence of the Lord encourage us to go on and run the race. But I mean something different. The best way to describe it is to use an example. Stephen was full of the Holy Spirit and looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God. However he was also being bludgeoned to death. So feelings become irrelevant under such extreme conditions. But I often wonder what he actually felt. Did he even feel any of the stones bashing at him while he gazed at the glory of God??
03-12-2016 03:24 PM
JJ
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewManLiving View Post
The Lord is so simple. We are the ones who are complex. There is nothing that I'm aware of in scripture about "feeling" the Spirit. But there is a lot said about being filled in Spirit and how we go about doing that. Even during the outpouring of the Spirit in Acts, there is no mention of feelings just a lot of fillings. This does not mean that they did not feel something, it's just that filling is far more superior than feeling. There is also much said about the Peace of God which surpasses all understanding. In other words, when things are not so good and we may feel lousy, we can still have a deep peace that comes from pleasing God.

The Lord tells us that where two or three are gathered in His name then He is also present. Does not say anything about feelings, or being on some local ground or meeting with a certain group of people. We add all this complexity - not Him. He is always present with us and among us when we gather in His name. Why is it so hard for us just to take Him at His Word. Lord we believe but help our unbelief!
I generally agree that focusing on feeling (or even on "my spirit" as is taught in LC) versus turning our hearts to behold our glorious Lord himself is a mistake.

I recall an instance that describes something of a feeling in the New Testament, but most translations don't use the word feeling (a few do):

Luke 24:32 They said to one another, “Were not our hearts burning within us while He was speaking to us on the road, while He was explaining the Scriptures to us?” (New American Standard Version)

I think we can relate to this. When the Lord opens the scripture to us, and sometimes it is through other believers, sometimes directly, our hearts can burn within.
03-11-2016 02:00 PM
NewManLiving
Re: My Testimony

The Lord is so simple. We are the ones who are complex. There is nothing that I'm aware of in scripture about "feeling" the Spirit. But there is a lot said about being filled in Spirit and how we go about doing that. Even during the outpouring of the Spirit in Acts, there is no mention of feelings just a lot of fillings. This does not mean that they did not feel something, it's just that filling is far more superior than feeling. There is also much said about the Peace of God which surpasses all understanding. In other words, when things are not so good and we may feel lousy, we can still have a deep peace that comes from pleasing God.

The Lord tells us that where two or three are gathered in His name then He is also present. Does not say anything about feelings, or being on some local ground or meeting with a certain group of people. We add all this complexity - not Him. He is always present with us and among us when we gather in His name. Why is it so hard for us just to take Him at His Word. Lord we believe but help our unbelief!
03-11-2016 01:38 PM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

New Beginnings, like your LC family, I too was "trained" to critique all other Christian gatherings, and only sense the Lord when we met together. This indoctrination is, of course, self-fulfilling. I was programmed to condemn outsiders, and to only love insiders, and so that's what I did, thus "proving" that what I was taught about the LC was "true."

I had many, many so-called charismatic corporate experiences of the Lord in the meetings, especially in those early days, not tongue-speaking, but definitely "feeling" the Spirit. Some were very real, and some were probably manufactured, and some were just "fun" times with the saints. I also, however, felt the deadness, dryness, boredom, depression, etc. sitting in the meetings, especially as the years wore on. I went to many Anaheim trainings during the 90's, and I just took notes to keep from falling asleep. Eventually, I felt the same way towards the Cleveland regional gatherings.

The healthiest experiences, I now believe, are personal with the Lord. Unfortunately, the faith of many of the LC'ers is tied to their meetings. That is why they are so devastated when passing thru their regular "storms." Personal experiences of the Lord are definitely the healthiest. They are "portable." They can occur in any location. Just you and Jesus.

I remember right after I got saved, I went to a friend's Catholic wedding and wanted to receive communion during the Mass. I was filled in the Spirit with the Lord. It was wonderful. The Lord felt so near to me. A few months later I came to the LC and slowly got filled with "Catholic hate," and now I could never have that experience again at Mass.
03-11-2016 01:17 PM
Terry
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I see the unity of spirit to be a bond of love, humility, gentleness and patience between believers on a personal level.
I believe it should be as I quoted. Problem is in the local churches I just haven't seen love and humility towards non-LSM/LC Christians.
In my post-LC experiences, where a believer chooses to meet is irrelevant in matters of "love, humility, gentleness and patience between believers". One could stop meeting with one church in favor of another, but it doesn't become a condition in receiving one another.
03-11-2016 12:59 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

One significant roadblock I have met again and again in my past attempts to get my family out of the LC deals with feeling the spirit. Some have said to me that the LC is the only place they have felt the spirit, or that their feelings confirm the presence and oneness of spirit within the group. It appears that this is still a stumbling block for us as we are finally departing.

Now I personally have always been skeptical about this. Initially coming into the LC, it looked attractive. So I tried it on for size and it did not fit. As much as I hate to admit this here, I can only recall two instances where I was in spirit by definition of being in an elated emotional state during a meeting. One of these instances was my LC baptism (my second baptism.)

Now my experiences of the spirit include private feelings of conviction or empowerment. I have felt comfort in my sufferings in solitude. I have felt love and encouragement in more intimate exchanges with other believers. But public displays of affection for my Lord have always felt awkward.

I had an interesting experience recently. I went to a memorial service, which clearly is an emotionally charged atmosphere in itself. The service was a Messianic Jewish service which was a new experience for me. I found it quite lovely and moving. I felt the spirit comforting us in our grief and as we praised the Lord, I felt joy for our dear brother who has left this world to be with the Lord. I feel like it is in these circumstances, where we share in each other’s grief and loss, where the spirit comes in and unites us. However, my LC family, who also attended the service, did not see it that way. There was bountiful criticism unleashed during the drive home.

It is my nature to shy away from charismatic groups. I haven’t found any evidence that these emotional experiences are in any way a confirmation of my salvation. I see the unity of spirit to be a bond of love, humility, gentleness and patience between believers on a personal level. But, in case I’m missing something, is there any reason I should question my conclusion? Is there any evidence that there needs to be a corporate emotional response to the Lord?

Thank you.
03-04-2016 09:00 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Thank you all again, those were wonderful responses.

I experienced grace and countless blessings today, I really appreciate you all helping me get into the right frame of mind.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
This dissolution of (John's) self created the matrix to form the new man.
I can visualize this. My hideous self dissolving in a flowing steam of living water. It is a refreshing thought.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewManLiving View Post
I believe that He just desires us to love Him and believe Him. Sometimes that is not so easy especially when everything seems to be going wrong. He looks at our heart and not our mistakes.
We had a guest pastor at my little co-op this morning. His message sounded something like the above quote. The Lord doesn't look at our mistakes.

The pastor used Psalm 1 for the scripture and he gave a sweet little analogy of a tree and all the care required from the gardener for the tree to flourish. The tree itself cannot flourish from its own efforts.

Have a lovely weekend and thank you again!
03-04-2016 07:23 AM
JJ
Re: My Testimony

Right on, brothers! I've been enjoying the responses to New Beginnings' question about what sanctification looks like. Legalism looks like the Pharisees..... adding rules that aren't in scripture to place burdens on others they can't bear themselves, and missing the heart of God....which is to see God Himself in Christ, repent of our absolute unholiness, then place our lives in His hands to work out His holiness as we live "ordinary" human lives filled with His Holy Spirit.
03-03-2016 08:32 AM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
I say, absolutely. Jesus met the standard. He alone is legal; we are all "illegals" who don't belong in God's kingdom. We the rebellious were expelled, but God loved us so much that He sent His only begotten Son. Hear Him, and live.

Now, what is Jesus' legalism, towards us? "Obey my commandments, just as I obeyed the Father".

2. Forgive others for their failures, and God will forgive yours. Period.
Great points! You could say that these are the great commands: Love God (he who loves Me will keep My word) and love your neighbor (starts with forgiveness.)

Holiness, like distorted oneness, has been all twisted up by God's enemy. So much fleshly work is done under the guise of holiness. Around here the Amish system supposedly made them "holy." But look at all the contradictions -- Land lines bad, cell phones good. Electric service bad, gas powered refridgerator and washing machine good. Cars bad, Uber driver good. Natural gas pipe bad, propane tank good.

Legalism and legalistic sects operate by fear, not by love and forgiveness. They have created systems of spies and sleeper cells which get activated by religious zealots. Their program pleases man, but not God. They live by the seen, not by the unseen, walking by sight, not by faith. Their systems of sanctification always have clearly identifiable checklists in order to monitor the progress of the "faithful."

Now don"t get me wrong, I have a lot of love and respect for Amish people. They have to make a living too. But let's not think that God is pleased with navy slacks that do not have "worldly" zippers. God is pleased with His Son, and He has told us so plainly, even with an audible voice, "hear Him."
03-03-2016 06:56 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Is there any profit in legalism?
I say, absolutely. Jesus met the standard. He alone is legal; we are all "illegals" who don't belong in God's kingdom. We the rebellious were expelled, but God loved us so much that He sent His only begotten Son. Hear Him, and live.

Now, what is Jesus' legalism, towards us? "Obey my commandments, just as I obeyed the Father". Gulp.

Of course we remain pathetic failures (on God's terms, not ours). What to do? 1. Struggle, try, try, try... the Holy Spirit will see us, and come alongside and help us in our weakness(es). This is not law but grace, the grace of God coming alongside (the paraclete) to help us in our weakness. But we have to try, to receive grace.

2. Forgive others for their failures, and God will forgive yours. Period. It is a statement of fact. Do it and you will be on the right side of the ledger.

.................................................. .......

As mentioned previously, holiness and sanctification are linked by the same root structure: sanctification is to become holy, like God.

And the way to do this, from what I see, is to see God's holiness. We simultaneously see what God is, and what we are not. This opens the way for grace. John the disciple, who'd been with Jesus for 3+ years, seen the Pentecost, seen the church age form, seen Paul come and go, seen so much... when he saw the Holy One of God ministering before the throne, The Sanctified High Priest in the midst of the seven burning lampstands, he fell down as dead. He simultaneously saw reality of God, and saw the lack of man. This dissolution of (John's) self created the matrix to form the new man. The word is the vehicle to suggest the Holy Spirit's arrival, the 'parousia'. And the Spirit says, "Take off your shoes, for you are standing on holy ground". The angel of the presence brings the presence. The messenger conveys the message: God is holy.

Anyway, I ramble incoherently here. Just thinking aloud.
03-02-2016 09:05 PM
NewManLiving
Re: My Testimony

I believe that He just desires us to love Him and believe Him. Sometimes that is not so easy especially when everything seems to be going wrong. He looks at our heart and not our mistakes. David made a lot of serious mistakes but the Lord was more concerned about his heart. The fact that we feel remorse when we think we are not pleasing to Him really means that we love Him. Otherwise we would not care or feel any remorse. He does test our faith, but not like we think. He is not looking to see if we make mistakes but if at the end of the day we could still say: Lord I love you with all my heart, even though my imperfect heart often fails you. Have no doubt about it - He is quite able to complete the work He began in you.

The book of Hebrews is always a big help to me. It shocked me to see that He learned obedience through the things that He suffered. I could never imagine why the Lord needed to learn obedience. He was also tempted in all things like us - incredible! He is able to sympathize with our weakness because He felt that same weakness pierce His body to the core. We have such a High Priest that is seated at the right hand of the Father. He intercedes for us constantly! And He is able to save us to the uttermost! He became just like us in every way except without sin. When you talk to Him He knows exactly how you feel. So take cheer and be at peace. If God is for us who or what can possibly be against us!
03-02-2016 07:19 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Thank you everyone. All your responses were wonderful and helpful.

NewManLiving, your response was especially helpful. I think that I am still haunted by the accusations that I must not love Jesus because I am not doing X, Y, and Z. I may not have been displeasing the Lord by not reading my HWFMR or not attending enough meetings and conferences, but there were some truths in those accusations. I wasn't reading the word or meeting with Christians regularly. I couldn't see the truth amidst the lies. Religion had lost all appeal, and I really didn't believe any other group of Christians would be any different. I was certainly lost but that could never nullify my need and desire for my Savoir.

Is there any profit in legalism? Is there a Christian standard of living that must be met? Is there a measure of Christ that must be attained? Or does the Lord change our hearts to desire meeting all these requirements.

Thank you all for hearing me and I apologize for going in circles...again.
03-02-2016 12:53 PM
countmeworthy
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewManLiving View Post
For me Ephesians 4:17 - 5:21 is a good start. I must not forget that I have put on Christ. I am a New Creation. Thus my avatar ( contemporary definition ) NewManLiving. It was intentional to remind me that even though I am crucified with Christ and my old man is in the grave, there is still a war going on. I can still choose to live by the old or the new man. I have found that that my old-man decisions always remove God's peace. Notice I did not say good feelings. We are more likely to resort to the old-man when we don't feel so great or are in a dry zone. But we should always have the peace of God regardless of how bad things seem or how good or lousy we feel. I always know when I am not pleasing to God because I loose that deep peace ( that is far beyond good or bad feelings) and go and hide in the woods like Adam - not wanting to talk or see God. It's sad I know but I'm sometimes in the woods But I don't like it there and the Lord comes looking for me after a while. His compassion and my confession restore His peace. Sometimes with good feelings but more often the trial continues but always with the peace. There was never a truer saying than: To set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. To set the mind on the flesh is death. I have a lot of experience on both ends, unfortunately, more on the latter side, but God is able to do above all that I ask or think, so I leave it to Him
This is such a good testimony!! We all go through dry spells. But God is so Faithful, He always does come looking for us! One of the biggest challenges ALL believers struggle with is setting the mind on the Spirit. To walk in the Spirit can be so baffling. "If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit." I "think" I have gotten better walking in the Spirit. Can't explain it in words but my lamp is filled and the light is shining in the lamp.

A few years ago, I actually received Revelation from the Spirit what Galatians 2:20 means!!
What came to me was by me (us) having fellowship with the Lord, through prayer, studying, reading, encouraging one another.. being joyous in all things.. working, paying bills, (UGH), hanging out with friends, even watching TV WITH Him, we are crucifying the flesh! If we are watching TV and something sinful or evil appears, I automatically turn away or change the channel and speak to the Lord..calling on His Holy Name.

Again. Great testimony!
03-02-2016 12:43 PM
countmeworthy
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by JJ View Post
I'd recommend you use Bible Gateway, Bible Hub, or Blue Letter Bible to do a Bible Word search on the words "holy", "sanctify", and "sanctification" (all have the same root word in Greek), and read as many of the verses as you can (there are many!) to see how the Bible defines sanctification.

Warning, that will be a lot of work, but it might get you out of the weeds on this. I've done such a Word search before, and just wanted to bow down to my God and savior Jesus, and beg His Holy Spirit to sanctify me from my filthiness.
I use biblegateway.com all the time. I love it because I can type in a word and all the words will pop up. If I am looking for a particular scripture, that I know is the NT, I can go to the right side menu and scan down to the NT. If I think it's in 1 Corinthians, I simply click on it..

If I want to read the passage or scripture in a different translation, I simply switch to the translation. A few years ago, I read Psalm 91 in about 7 translations for a whole week!

http://www.gotquestions.org/ is also a good site to check out for topics and questions.

Blessings to all !
03-02-2016 06:39 AM
NewManLiving
Re: My Testimony

For me Ephesians 4:17 - 5:21 is a good start. I must not forget that I have put on Christ. I am a New Creation. Thus my avatar ( contemporary definition ) NewManLiving. It was intentional to remind me that even though I am crucified with Christ and my old man is in the grave, there is still a war going on. I can still choose to live by the old or the new man. I have found that that my old-man decisions always remove God's peace. Notice I did not say good feelings. We are more likely to resort to the old-man when we don't feel so great or are in a dry zone. But we should always have the peace of God regardless of how bad things seem or how good or lousy we feel. I always know when I am not pleasing to God because I loose that deep peace ( that is far beyond good or bad feelings) and go and hide in the woods like Adam - not wanting to talk or see God. It's sad I know but I'm sometimes in the woods But I don't like it there and the Lord comes looking for me after a while. His compassion and my confession restore His peace. Sometimes with good feelings but more often the trial continues but always with the peace. There was never a truer saying than: To set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. To set the mind on the flesh is death. I have a lot of experience on both ends, unfortunately, more on the latter side, but God is able to do above all that I ask or think, so I leave it to Him
03-01-2016 10:18 PM
JJ
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Hello,

I would really appreciate some input on what the process of sanctification looks like apart from the LC doctrine. My understanding here is quite muddled. I keep cycling back to old habits of thought that aren't so helpful. I understand that sanctification is an individual process and there is no one-size-fits-all equation that leads to a glorious end.

But what should sanctification look like?
I'd recommend you use Bible Gateway, Bible Hub, or Blue Letter Bible to do a Bible Word search on the words "holy", "sanctify", and "sanctification" (all have the same root word in Greek), and read as many of the verses as you can (there are many!) to see how the Bible defines sanctification.

Warning, that will be a lot of work, but it might get you out of the weeds on this. I've done such a Word search before, and just wanted to bow down to my God and savior Jesus, and beg His Holy Spirit to sanctify me from my filthiness.
03-01-2016 08:17 PM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
But what should sanctification look like?
Quote:
Originally Posted by HERn View Post
Maybe it looks like Peter who after denying the Lord goes on to give his life for the church. Or maybe the Peter who eats with dirty Gentiles when the religious Jerusalem brothers from James are away, but then pulls away from the and is rebuked by Paul. Or maybe it looks like dear brother Mark who deserts Paul and Barnabus and is refused to be allowed to go on another trip with Paul, who the ends up writing the book of Mark. Or maybe the crooked tax collector who after a meal with Jesus proclaims he will repay and give half his riches to the poor.

I don't think it looks like a bunch of blended snobs charging a $150 dollars to attend a series man-made sermons twice a year.
Brother HERn made some great points here. Each example he cited from the Bible involved some brother's failure and then genuine repentance, which gave the Spirit of God great opportunity to sanctify him by faith.

LC sanctification, however, like many other legalistic, man-pleasing organizations, involves readily identifiable human behavior which can be observed and approved by others. In other words, Ohio used to be "sanctified" because I made all the meetings and functioned in every one, I served at the meeting hall untold hours, I gave hospitality, I went to trainings and conferences, and I no longer drank, smoke, swore, questioned the brothers, nor bought new cars. I was a "good" holy brother.

Do you see the difficulty New Beginnings? The Bible says that God looks at the heart. Most of what we call sanctification is merely behavioral.
03-01-2016 06:50 PM
HERn
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Hello,

I would really appreciate some input on what the process of sanctification looks like apart from the LC doctrine. My understanding here is quite muddled. I keep cycling back to old habits of thought that aren't so helpful. I understand that sanctification is an individual process and there is no one-size-fits-all equation that leads to a glorious end.

But what should sanctification look like?
Maybe it looks like Peter who after denying the Lord goes on to give his life for the church. Or maybe the Peter who eats with dirty Gentiles when the religious Jerusalem brothers from James are away, but then pulls away from the and is rebuked by Paul. Or maybe it looks like dear brother Mark who deserts Paul and Barnabus and is refused to be allowed to go on another trip with Paul, who the ends up writing the book of Mark. Or maybe the crooked tax collector who after a meal with Jesus proclaims he will repay and give half his riches to the poor. I don't think it looks like a bunch of blended snobs charging a $150 dollars to attend a series man-made sermons twice a year.
03-01-2016 06:39 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Hello,

I would really appreciate some input on what the process of sanctification looks like apart from the LC doctrine. My understanding here is quite muddled. I keep cycling back to old habits of thought that aren't so helpful. I understand that sanctification is an individual process and there is no one-size-fits-all equation that leads to a glorious end.

But what should sanctification look like?
02-06-2016 07:42 PM
Terry
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by HERn View Post
They are just another Christian denomination that has become a man-following sect.
I fully agree. It really gets under my skin how the LSM/LC bashes non-LSM Christians without giving much thought what their actions are doing?
In their mind they feel, they're on the proper ground (worshipping in Jerusalem) while all other Christians are meeting on denominations on the improper ground. Yes, I would say the LSM/LC are the very denominations they are condemning.
02-05-2016 08:51 PM
HERn
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by NewManLiving View Post
Just my opinion, as I do not know Steve personally, but I am not quite sure what you mean by "positively". If it means that he would become an ostrich with his head buried in the sand if only the brothers would let him back in then I do not think so. That's the issue: The LSMLC is not interested in reconciliation (at least not yet) they are only interested in yes-men. Once you are "marked out" as an opposer then you are suspect thereafter. Steve has a pure heart. The LSMLC does not like pure hearts.
Dear All,

I am sorry, but there is nothing special about the LSM LCs. They are just another Christian denomination that has become a man-following sect.
02-05-2016 07:27 PM
NewManLiving
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terry View Post
Being in the same geographic area as Indiana, I have gotten to know him personally for roughly 12 years. He's a brother with a heart of reconciliation while LC responsible brothers have done much to hamper Indiana able to meet in a positive way.
Here's how it works, when Indiana is able to meet with a LC, he's able to go on positively. When the brothers keep Indiana out from meeting, they're prompting Indiana to write
Just my opinion, as I do not know Steve personally, but I am not quite sure what you mean by "positively". If it means that he would become an ostrich with his head buried in the sand if only the brothers would let him back in then I do not think so. That's the issue: The LSMLC is not interested in reconciliation (at least not yet) they are only interested in yes-men. Once you are "marked out" as an opposer then you are suspect thereafter. Steve has a pure heart. The LSMLC does not like pure hearts.
02-05-2016 06:38 PM
Terry
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
I agree, and furthermore Indiana has done more to act as an LC investigative reporter than any other person. He has sought out many ex-members to present to us both sides of the story. Through Indiana's networking skills we now have the testimonies of many well-informed ex-members, whose integrity have never been questioned (except of course by Lee and LSM when these brothers began to speak their conscience).
Being in the same geographic area as Indiana, I have gotten to know him personally for roughly 12 years. He's a brother with a heart of reconciliation while LC responsible brothers have done much to hamper Indiana able to meet in a positive way.
Here's how it works, when Indiana is able to meet with a LC, he's able to go on positively. When the brothers keep Indiana out from meeting, they're prompting Indiana to write.
In my opinion it's the behaviors and attitudes of elders and coworkers that have motivated much of Indiana's writings without realizing it. Had they had a shepherding heart instead of a hireling, they could have brought Indiana back into fellowship.
My feeling is elders operate on directives from Anaheim regarding Indiana just as the Church in Vista operates on directives from Anaheim regarding Mario Sandoval.
02-05-2016 01:22 PM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
Indiana has taken quite a lot of flack on this forum for essentially repeating himself over and over. The same old story, as it were.
I agree, and furthermore Indiana has done more to act as an LC investigative reporter than any other person. He has sought out many ex-members to present to us both sides of the story. Through Indiana's networking skills we now have the testimonies of many well-informed ex-members, whose integrity have never been questioned (except of course by Lee and LSM when these brothers began to speak their conscience).
02-05-2016 10:37 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Now my husband is quite angry... at being deceived and he would like some reading material from former members, especially the writings of our member Indiana.
Indiana has taken quite a lot of flack on this forum for essentially repeating himself over and over. The same old story, as it were.

But his writings have actually had an immeasurable impact on the discussion, because they are sourced, therefore the Blendeds cannot deny what is written. Their only complaint has been that his writings bring "death". But Indiana began his quest to know the hidden history of the LC because at one point WL said we should seek out all the lost and broken ones who fell by the wayside. Indiana's only crime was to take WL at his word, instead of nodding and smiling and going on to next "rich" Life-Study lesson, or HWMR bullet point outline.

Indiana actually sought out the real people who got trampled and expelled by the LC system, and learned their stories, and presented these stories to LC leadership. They tried to repress these previously hidden narratives, and he ended up expelled, and telling these narratives from the metaphorical roof-tops.

Also, Indiana is a good source because his writing lacks the vitriol which often accompanies such revelations. I myself am guilty as any, and more-so than some. It's nice to get a "just the facts, ma'am" approach without the hysterical and hyperventilating commentary which might repel many true believers and fence-sitters.

In defense of hysterical hyperventilating, much done by yours truly here, look at those who got evil spirits expelled in the gospels and Acts. A lot of rolling around in the dust and foaming at the mouth.

Mark 9:20 So they brought him. When the spirit saw Jesus, it immediately threw the boy into a convulsion. He fell to the ground and rolled around, foaming at the mouth.

I pray a little indulgence from our readers, as we foam a bit while attempting to exorcise ourselves by God's mercy. And in turn we writers can see in Indiana's attempts to tell "just the facts" a nice guide toward objectivity, i.e. reality, from the house-of-subjective-mirrors world of the LC.

Peace to all. May God have mercy.
02-03-2016 09:59 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by HERn View Post
I rejoice with you. The " Golden Thread" might also be a good one to read.
The Thread of Gold, by Jane Carol Anderson

http://www.thethreadofgold.com/Chapter_1.html
02-01-2016 09:23 PM
HERn
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Hello

I thought I should post an update. I had wanted to wait until there was some measurable progress to report or at least until I had something good to say, and... today I do.

I had an interesting conversation with my husband. Now the Lord clearly put these words in my mouth because I never would have thought that these words would be what it took for my husband to see the light. But the Lord knew. I spoke the truth and a light came on. Now my husband is quite angry (but not at me...whew!) He is angry at being deceived and he would like some reading material from former members, especially the writings of our member Indiana. Certainly the mention of his name in our conversation made a big impact.

I know we have a long way to go yet but today I feel very, very hopeful.

Thank you all for all your care and support.
I rejoice with you. The " Golden Thread" might also be a good one to read.
02-01-2016 05:06 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Hello

I thought I should post an update. I had wanted to wait until there was some measurable progress to report or at least until I had something good to say, and... today I do.

I had an interesting conversation with my husband. Now the Lord clearly put these words in my mouth because I never would have thought that these words would be what it took for my husband to see the light. But the Lord knew. I spoke the truth and a light came on. Now my husband is quite angry (but not at me...whew!) He is angry at being deceived and he would like some reading material from former members, especially the writings of our member Indiana. Certainly the mention of his name in our conversation made a big impact.

I know we have a long way to go yet but today I feel very, very hopeful.

Thank you all for all your care and support.
01-12-2016 11:00 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I am not clear yet how to use this discerning heart of mine. Yes, it needs to be in obedience to the law.
He is the Obedient One. Fix your eyes upon Him. Let your consciousness meld with His. Only He can see the Father's will. And He will show you, if you ask. But you must ask Him. Quietly, persistently, stubbornly. Like Mary at the tomb. Refuse to go, refuse to yield. He will bless you. (Gen 32:26)
Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
But my reality doesn't appear so black and white.
If you look at your situation, it will persist, even grow and metastasize. But if you look at Him, your situation will change, even radically, and miraculously. The disciples learned this, and then taught it.

And your situation may seemingly degrade, even precipitously, along the way. Look at Paul and Silas. Beaten and in jail for preaching the gospel. At that point they faced death. But they didn't face death, but continually faced God through hymns of praise. The whole jail population lay quiet, in the dark, listening to them (Acts 16:25). And then salvation came, not only for them, but for those with them (1 Tim 4:16).

This is our journey.
01-12-2016 09:00 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Probably the worst thing my experience in the LC did to me was damaging my discerning heart.

I know and believe that my heavenly Father is in control of my situation. Yet He will lay choices before me daily.

I am not clear yet how to use this discerning heart of mine. Yes, it needs to be in obedience to the law. But my reality doesn't appear so black and white.
01-11-2016 08:40 PM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by HERn View Post
The double bind is true in another way also. The ministry and most LSM preachers and elders believe that there is nothing of value in Christianity outside of their recovery. So, I think what happens is that when the dear saints see the sin, corruption and evil in the LSM system and turn away from it they have been convinced that only the devil, lies, and Babylon exist outside of what used to be their recovery. They are in a terrible double bind created by what I believe is the false teaching of WL and now of the blinded LSM-blendeds. Instead of finding a place in the body of Christ in other groups their faith becomes shipwrecked.
The double bind kicks in whenever something "negative" happens. When it happens to insiders, it is just the activity of the enemy, proving that the Recovery is so special to the Lord. To outsiders, it is the Lord's judgment upon them to expose their hopelessly divided condition.
01-11-2016 07:05 PM
HERn
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
Here's a post I made on the "double bind" problem. As a "ministry" devotee I was simultaneously battered by the failures of self, and unable to address them because of indoctrination ("get out of your mind") and unable to seek help in despised "fallen Christianity". I was worse than the sinners of the world, yet too much of a know-it-all to humble myself and ask for help.

But I continually exposed myself to others' faith, and eventually saw that I didn't have a corner on the truth, and that my truth, so-called, was riddled with contradictions. Slowly I began to open, consider, and avail of new paths.

You can't be "negative" and antagonistic and expose the double bind. You have to be positive, reinforce the good things, and trust that the Lord will shine the light. Look at Saul of Tarsus, on the road to Damascus. Only God could have penetrated that heart.
The double bind is true in another way also. The ministry and most LSM preachers and elders believe that there is nothing of value in Christianity outside of their recovery. So, I think what happens is that when the dear saints see the sin, corruption and evil in the LSM system and turn away from it they have been convinced that only the devil, lies, and Babylon exist outside of what used to be their recovery. They are in a terrible double bind created by what I believe is the false teaching of WL and now of the blinded LSM-blendeds. Instead of finding a place in the body of Christ in other groups their faith becomes shipwrecked.
01-11-2016 04:12 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
Make sure that you have an abundant supply of grace if you think that you are to be the vehicle for God's negative sanction. Remember what happened to Moses when he "corrected" the Egyptian taskmaster. 40 years in the desert.
I wasn't necessarily referring to myself as the "negative" motivational force. I am only a piece of the negative reality. But how can someone see a need for change without a negative force acting on them.
01-11-2016 03:46 PM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Doesn't there initially need to be a "negative" motivational force to bring someone briefly into reality so that they can receive what is truly positive.
Make sure that you have an abundant supply of grace if you think that you are to be the vehicle for God's negative sanction. Remember what happened to Moses when he "corrected" the Egyptian taskmaster. 40 years in the desert.
01-11-2016 03:12 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post

You can't be "negative" and antagonistic and expose the double bind. You have to be positive, reinforce the good things, and trust that the Lord will shine the light. Look at Saul of Tarsus, on the road to Damascus. Only God could have penetrated that heart.
Yes. But...

Doesn't there initially need to be a "negative" motivational force to bring someone briefly into reality so that they can receive what is truly positive.
01-11-2016 08:21 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
I remember leaving the LSM system and being in the world, trying to get help, trying to "fellowship"; it was hard because everytime someone quoted a verse I could quote six. I was simultaneously all smashed up and "holier than thou"...I was a real mess! God put some people in my path who didn't have as many verses as me, not so "systemic" in theology, but they had a LOT more reality, and I wasn't so stupid that I couldn't realize it. So I humbled myself, and began to listen. Eventually I realized my "airtight system" wasn't so airtight, and thus was a contributor in my mess and my inability to break free.

The "double bind" is a terrible, paralyzing situation. You can't go forward, can't go back. My suspicion is that many are trapped in this way.
Here's a post I made on the "double bind" problem. As a "ministry" devotee I was simultaneously battered by the failures of self, and unable to address them because of indoctrination ("get out of your mind") and unable to seek help in despised "fallen Christianity". I was worse than the sinners of the world, yet too much of a know-it-all to humble myself and ask for help.

But I continually exposed myself to others' faith, and eventually saw that I didn't have a corner on the truth, and that my truth, so-called, was riddled with contradictions. Slowly I began to open, consider, and avail of new paths.

You can't be "negative" and antagonistic and expose the double bind. You have to be positive, reinforce the good things, and trust that the Lord will shine the light. Look at Saul of Tarsus, on the road to Damascus. Only God could have penetrated that heart.
01-10-2016 06:40 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

I cannot resist posting today because I have something good to say.

My family is going to a denomination today and it was completely my husband's idea. All I did was remind him to pray before dinner last night. Shortly after, he suggested we visit my friend's church.

Now I may end up back at the LC next week, but for today...I am riding the Freedom train.

Have a wonderful Sunday!

And thank you again for all your support!
01-06-2016 01:56 PM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Thank you all for your support.

But I am going to have to say goodbye, for now.
Thanks for stopping by and contributing to the discussion. Your voice is important.

God's peace to you. You're in His hands.
01-05-2016 10:55 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
Or Miss Emily Fisbacher? Introduced Watchman Nee to charismatic / pentecostal practices. Was hers also an odd spirituality, or no?
Sorry, that was Elizabeth Fischbacher. Of many things, a scholar I am not.
01-05-2016 10:37 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
This thread is starting to wander around.
.
I have always been completely aware of what I have been doing here.

Thank you all for your support.

But I am going to have to say goodbye, for now.
01-05-2016 10:25 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
This thread is starting to wander around.

It's prolly best to leave this thread open for New Beginnings and her story.
Warning to NB and any Christian women posting here: this is a fundamentalist-oriented forum, and many [LC] readers will resent you simply for being a female and speaking your mind. Sisters aren't supposed to think! That's disastrous! Unprecedented! Shameful! (which is why I then asked: So why did Nee disciple himself to Barber, Penn-Lewis, Guyon, Fischbacher, and others? Hmm...)

And once you've leaped that gauntlet you'll run into the other posters, who are typically know-it-all men, and who'll either ignore you or hijack your threads and ideas, and drag them off to their pet projects and themes. Or they'll try to argue with you endlessly because your ideas are different from theirs.

Other than that, have fun!

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
It's a power thing... It's how they reinforce the social structure...
Back to my soap box: in every conference or training someone has to be ceremonially pilloried from the dias. Women are the easy stand-in when there are no "rebellious brothers" available. This is how the LC understands the order. Usually the remarks are met with silence, unless it's cleverly cutting, and then a senior brother up front will guffaw or belly-laugh. Other than that it's tacit approval via silence. "Big Brother is knocking down so-and-so. Glad it's not me."

I'm trying to delineate NB's world, as I see it; obviously I don't see much. But I'm not afraid to say what I do see.
01-05-2016 07:21 AM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
It's a power thing. I get to slap you but you can't slap me back. It's how they reinforce the social structure; otherwise known as "good odor in the church". Or, flavor; depending on how one characterises their subjective assessment.
This thread is starting to wander around.

It's prolly best to leave this thread open for New Beginnings and her story.
01-04-2016 09:21 PM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Freedom View Post
I have noticed the same thing about RK. I have heard many messages where he referred to some anonymous person or situation that maybe somehow in his mind had become a big issue. I don't get it...
It's a power thing. I get to slap you but you can't slap me back. It's how they reinforce the social structure; otherwise known as "good odor in the church". Or, flavor; depending on how one characterises their subjective assessment.
01-04-2016 07:50 PM
Terry
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Freedom View Post
I have noticed the same thing about RK. I have heard many messages where he referred to some anonymous person or situation that maybe somehow in his mind had become a big issue. I don't get it, because when people hear that, they naturally want to hear more details. Is he trying to stir up curiosity?
Specifically regarding Steve Isitt, I told him last night what Ron did in Ecuador on the positive side is to give Steve free advertisement to the South American brothers in attendance. Not everyone is going to take Ron's speaking as gospel. Some who have intellect will want to know "the rest of the story".
01-04-2016 06:53 PM
Freedom
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by HERn View Post
I seem to recall that in almost every sermon by RK there was some disparaging remark made about an anonymous brother or sister; one was something like the brother was ostentatious, the sister was a butterfly, the elder was like a sumo wrestler on the front row. The effect was to cause me to start reviewing the saints in my locality to try and identify the offender. This seems to be a pattern with RK and I think it is close to stirring up contention and judgement. How is this part of the so-called "God's Economy"? Oh, my bad...junior MOTAs get a free pass.
I have noticed the same thing about RK. I have heard many messages where he referred to some anonymous person or situation that maybe somehow in his mind had become a big issue. I don't get it, because when people hear that, they naturally want to hear more details. Is he trying to stir up curiosity?
01-04-2016 03:26 PM
HERn
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Della View Post
In message 12 of the recent training, Ron Kangas noted what he called the "odd spirituality" of sisters who tried to share their experiences of Christ in the meetings. I guess Jessie Penn-Lewis was exempt?
I seem to recall that in almost every sermon by RK there was some disparaging remark made about an anonymous brother or sister; one was something like the brother was ostentatious, the sister was a butterfly, the elder was like a sumo wrestler on the front row. The effect was to cause me to start reviewing the saints in my locality to try and identify the offender. This seems to be a pattern with RK and I think it is close to stirring up contention and judgement. How is this part of the so-called "God's Economy"? Oh, my bad...junior MOTAs get a free pass.
01-04-2016 01:32 PM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terry View Post
In the local churches there's become an inability to receive anything not of the ministry. The reaction may be described as "deer in the headlights" followed by confusion how does this relate to the ministry?
If any experience isn't somehow mediated or groomed by the ministry, it's regarded with suspicion. Independence, and/or rebellion are sure to follow.

Apropos of nothing, I work in a highly technical field, and the two most relentlessly rational and highly logical people I ever met were both women. And it was no contest.
01-04-2016 12:49 PM
Terry
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Della View Post
In message 12 of the recent training, Ron Kangas noted what he called the "odd spirituality" of sisters who tried to share their experiences of Christ in the meetings. I guess Jessie Penn-Lewis was exempt?
In retrospect, I tend to generalize sisters as being Christ-centered who see no practical application in the LSM publications. Whereas brothers tend to be ministry-centered who see LSM publications as essential for their Christian daily living. As a result sisters may have the thought with publications being a type of sandbox for the brothers.
In localities I have met with I've observed sisters who would be present for the Lord's Table, but when the prophesying meeting began, conspicuously absent. In the Local church from 30 years ago, I benefited more from testimonies given by sisters. As it provided a picture to me as a new believer what it was to experience Christ.
In my honest opinion I believe Ron's characterization of "odd spirituality" of sisters is because it's apart from the LSM publications. In the local churches there's become an inability to receive anything not of the ministry. The reaction may be described as "deer in the headlights" followed by confusion how does this relate to the ministry?
01-04-2016 08:05 AM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Della View Post
In message 12 of the recent training, Ron Kangas noted what he called the "odd spirituality" of sisters who tried to share their experiences of Christ in the meetings. I guess Jessie Penn-Lewis was exempt?
Btw, the Great Lakes Area under Titus Chu had much more respect for the sisters and their portion of Christ.
01-04-2016 08:03 AM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
If it weren’t for my mother coming and taking me to the hospital, I may not be here writing today. I was hospitalized for five days.
So sad to read this sister.

I encourage you to make Psalm 23 a part of your mind/thinking. Don't just memorize it, make it as real to you as your own address.

The last couple years have been difficult for me too, sometimes feeling even despair, so I put this Psalm in my wallet, on my wall, on my desk. Sometimes things got so difficult that even my memory failed me, so I forced my eyes to look at these verses of hope.

P.S. Please no more detailed info like "it's snowing," ages of your children, nothing to locate your city, etc. It's for your own good. LSM monitors these forums regularly. They have too many spies watching too few people. But do keep writing.
01-04-2016 07:38 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
In my view, there is nothing but odd spirituality in all the Recovery, including Kangas himself.
Or Miss Emily Fisbacher? Taught Nee charismatic / pentecostal practices. Was her spirituality odd, or no? If no, why then categorically judge, today? And if yes, then maybe that explains all the odd spirituality seen in the LC.

And why is Ron's subjective assessment of women taken quietly by the masses as equivalent to objective reality itself?
01-03-2016 07:25 PM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Della View Post
In message 12 of the recent training, Ron Kangas noted what he called the "odd spirituality" of sisters who tried to share their experiences of Christ in the meetings. I guess Jessie Penn-Lewis was exempt?
In my view, there is nothing but odd spirituality in all the Recovery, including Kangas himself.
01-03-2016 06:49 PM
Terry
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
One time on this forum, a testimony was posted concerning an LC brother who would not help his sick wife do the dishes because he "didn't want to do it out of his natural man." I could not believe it. It was at that point I realized just how sick some of Lee's teachings were. It helped to explain why so many marriages in the LC had failed. Lee's teaching that interprets "honey as natural affection that destroys the offering" is frankly pathetic.
Yes, I tend to see it as the Asian culture being applied through spiritual speak. Refusing to help out because of the natural man disclaimer. Non-LSM/LC brothers I know speak as I do that in marriage. submission is mutual. Sometimes the wife submits and sometimes the husband submits.
Practically, a brother will make a mountain out of a molehill if he refuses to help out with housework with whatever excuses he uses.
If a brother wants to be a living sacrifice for his wife, he will do what is needed.
01-03-2016 02:54 PM
Della
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
can sisters function in any meaningful capacity? If no, then Watchman Nee's ministry is probably illigitimate. If yes, then what happened? Answers, please - surely one of our dozens of readers can help solve this puzzle.
In message 12 of the recent training, Ron Kangas noted what he called the "odd spirituality" of sisters who tried to share their experiences of Christ in the meetings. I guess Jessie Penn-Lewis was exempt?
01-03-2016 02:22 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
One time on this forum, a testimony was posted concerning an LC brother who would not help his sick wife do the dishes because he "didn't want to do it out of his natural man." I could not believe it. It was at that point I realized just how sick some of Lee's teachings were. It helped to explain why so many marriages in the LC had failed. Lee's teaching that interprets "honey as natural affection that destroys the offering" is frankly pathetic.
.
Unfortunately, this was my experience as well.

I apologize if this is too personal. But I thought some of our readers ought to hear this story to know that things like this really do happen inside the LC.

Just four weeks after giving birth to my sweet baby girl, I became very ill. I had viral meningitis, although I did not know it at the time. For weeks, I struggled to care for my newborn and my two year old boy. I never slept, I couldn’t eat, and I spiked high fevers regularly. My husband did little to nothing for me. He showed very little concern for me. During this time, he even went out with the work-guys and came home completely drunk and I had to care for him.
If it weren’t for my mother coming and taking me to the hospital, I may not be here writing today.
I was hospitalized for five days.

Anyways, things like this really do happen inside the LC.
01-03-2016 01:47 PM
New Beginnings
Re: Watchman Nee on freedom of thought and expression

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post

Paul said, "Am I not free?" We can repeat this: men, women, blacks, whites, Barbarians, Scythians. Gentiles and Jews. Chinese. Dockworkers. Mulattos. Free. We are free. If we make distinctions today, and impose new conventions in a misguided attempt to find order and structure in a world of flux, to me this says that we don't trust the Spirit, but rather desire the freedom of a cage, and the peacefulness of a museum display case. No noise, no dust, no motion, no change, no bothersome uncertainty. No need to turn to the Spirit except what cereal to have for breakfast. Other than that, it's all figured out ("interpreted") by Big Brother.

Uncertainty is a difficult thing to deal with. I have been looking back on my teen years that led up to my current hostage situation. I left home when I was 16, being the rebellious, freedom-seeking sort. Those years where full of uncertainty, fear and pain. However, I learned, grew, changed, and matured. But coming into the LC was initially very comforting. Submitting to the authority and letting it control all my actions, thoughts and feeling enabled me to let go of that uncertainty. However, without uncertainty, I began to become numb to pain. Don’t worry, Be happy, right?

Pain is an important sensation that exists for the purpose of survival. For example, my two year old son comes into the kitchen and touches the hot burner. He instantly feels pain and learns that he should not touch that or he will be damaged. If I were to lay my hand on that burner and call on the Lord three times while leaving my hand there, would my hand not suffer damage? Pain is a signal that there needs to be a change.

Freedom always comes with some amount of uncertainty. So don’t ignore your pain. It is there for a reason. If something feels wrong, it probably is wrong.

I don’t believe that Christ ignored his pain while suffering on the cross. He willingly accepted the burden of suffering for the freedom of all mankind, whom he deeply loved.
01-03-2016 09:54 AM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Thank you, I do not disagree with this at all. I have seen these qualities in the men whose hearts belong to the Lord.
One time on this forum, a testimony was posted concerning an LC brother who would not help his sick wife do the dishes because he "didn't want to do it out of his natural man." I could not believe it. It was at that point I realized just how sick some of Lee's teachings were. It helped to explain why so many marriages in the LC had failed. Lee's teaching that interprets "honey as natural affection that destroys the offering" is frankly pathetic.

Another sickening trait that has plagued my wife and I is the critical, judging attitude we picked up. Between the two of us, we had more than 6 decades learning how to critique "all things Christian." I still tell people I am a "recovering judgaholic." There is no way any Christian could spend that many hours in Lee's meetings, and then not go home and criticize one another. How can any marriage survive non-stop nit-picking and tearing one another down?

In the LC, whenever one of us addressed leadership abuses and offenses, the standard answer was "did you gain Christ?" Hence, LC leaders could go on unchecked for years behaving like a bully. Forget about some cursory teaching about love when the patterns we observed were to the contrary. "Aren't you here for Christ, if you are here for anything else, you will always be disappointed. Be a man! Isn't grace sufficient for you?" Constant intimidations like these have the effect of destroying the much needed love in every marriage, every family, and every church.

New Beginnings, you and your family need much time being loved in the greater body of Christ. It's so wonderful that you have found some precious sisters in Christ who are showing you what the real "church life" should be like. You need a "recovery" from the Recovery. LSM has replaced the real love for His Son, for His people, and for His word with a false love for their ministry, their program, and their books. Your husband needs the same. He needs to be "circumcised" from any loyalty to the dead program of a dead man, and "resurrected" to a fresh devotion to Jesus Christ and your family.

We must all pray for this.
01-03-2016 07:45 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by micah6v8 View Post
I agree with what you have posted. If I were to nitpick, I would say that men can also have "sensitive hearts and gentle spirits".

Perhaps my response would be to quote Peter in Acts 5:29 "We must obey God rather than men".
"
Thank you, I do not disagree with this at all. I have seen these qualities in the men whose hearts belong to the Lord.
01-03-2016 07:39 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by HERn View Post
God may hate divorce, but I don't think He hates divorced people. In my opinion before a Christian husband or wife decides to divorce they should seek spiritual and psychological counseling, but immediate separation to protect lives and sanity may be wise. Just my personal feeling, not meant to condemn anyone.
Thank you HERn. This is excellent advice that I very much agree with.
01-03-2016 07:00 AM
micah6v8
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Since we have been on the topic of women, I’d like to write about submissiveness. But first, here is some scripture that I found quite wonderful.

“Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives, 2 when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear. 3 Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— 4 rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. 5 For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands, 6 as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror.” 1 Peter 3 (NKJV)

Very precious in the sight of God, these words are so beautiful to me. So do I believe in submission? Absolutely!

But I would like to talk about gender roles. God created men and women very differently. There is no question about that. Eve was created to be Adam’s counterpart, companion, and other half. Together they represent the perfect balance of masculine and feminine.

Women were created to be nurturers with sensitive hearts and gentle spirits. These qualities enable them to care for their husbands’ and children’s needs, both body, mind, and soul.

The role of men is that of protection, judgement and provision. I’ve often wondered if satan had approached Adam with the forbidden fruit first, would mankind have fallen into sin? I guess we can’t know for sure, but I have a feeling there was a reason the serpent targeted Eve first.

However, when a husband uses poor judgement and leads his family into sin, or fails to provide for their needs, or fails to protect and instead does harm, where do we draw the line? I don’t really know the answer to this. But I do believe that the Almighty Father loves his daughters and does not delight in their suffering.

In my opinion, a women should submit to Christ first and then to her husband.
Submission should never be out of fear, but only out of Love.
I agree with what you have posted. If I were to nitpick, I would say that men can also have "sensitive hearts and gentle spirits".

Perhaps my response would be to quote Peter in Acts 5:29 "We must obey God rather than men".

In that context, while God wants Christians to submit to human authorities (1 Peter 2:13), Christians can also take a stand when the human authorities require them to sin.

Peter in Acts 5:29 disobeyed the authorities who had told him and the others not to preach about Jesus.

Similarly the three men in the book of Daniel: Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego disobeyed the authorities and did not bow to the statute that King Nebuchadnezzar had set up.

As you probably know, Peter would get flogged by the authorities (Acts 5:40) while Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego would get thrown into the furnace.

However, God was with his people throughout. In Acts 5, God arranged for Gamaliel to speak to the Sanhedrin so that Peter was not put to death but got the lighter punishment of flogging.

As for Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, their lives were preserved.

I hope you will still be able to rejoice like Peter in Acts 5:41 because you "had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name"
01-02-2016 09:21 PM
HERn
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Since we have been on the topic of women, I’d like to write about submissiveness. But first, here is some scripture that I found quite wonderful.

“Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives, 2 when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear. 3 Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— 4 rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. 5 For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands, 6 as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror.” 1 Peter 3 (NKJV)

Very precious in the sight of God, these words are so beautiful to me. So do I believe in submission? Absolutely!

But I would like to talk about gender roles. God created men and women very differently. There is no question about that. Eve was created to be Adam’s counterpart, companion, and other half. Together they represent the perfect balance of masculine and feminine.

Women were created to be nurturers with sensitive hearts and gentle spirits. These qualities enable them to care for their husbands’ and children’s needs, both body, mind, and soul.

The role of men is that of protection, judgement and provision. I’ve often wondered if satan had approached Adam with the forbidden fruit first, would mankind have fallen into sin? I guess we can’t know for sure, but I have a feeling there was a reason the serpent targeted Eve first.

However, when a husband uses poor judgement and leads his family into sin, or fails to provide for their needs, or fails to protect and instead does harm, where do we draw the line? I don’t really know the answer to this. But I do believe that the Almighty Father loves his daughters and does not delight in their suffering.

In my opinion, a women should submit to Christ first and then to her husband.
Submission should never be out of fear, but only out of Love.
God may hate divorce, but I don't think He hates divorced people. In my opinion before a Christian husband or wife decides to divorce they should seek spiritual and psychological counseling, but immediate separation to protect lives and sanity may be wise. Just my personal feeling, not meant to condemn anyone.
01-02-2016 06:38 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Since we have been on the topic of women, I’d like to write about submissiveness. But first, here is some scripture that I found quite wonderful.

“Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives, 2 when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear. 3 Do not let your adornment be merely outward—arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— 4 rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. 5 For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands, 6 as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror.” 1 Peter 3 (NKJV)

Very precious in the sight of God, these words are so beautiful to me. So do I believe in submission? Absolutely!

But I would like to talk about gender roles. God created men and women very differently. There is no question about that. Eve was created to be Adam’s counterpart, companion, and other half. Together they represent the perfect balance of masculine and feminine.

Women were created to be nurturers with sensitive hearts and gentle spirits. These qualities enable them to care for their husbands’ and children’s needs, both body, mind, and soul.

The role of men is that of protection, judgement and provision. I’ve often wondered if satan had approached Adam with the forbidden fruit first, would mankind have fallen into sin? I guess we can’t know for sure, but I have a feeling there was a reason the serpent targeted Eve first.

However, when a husband uses poor judgement and leads his family into sin, or fails to provide for their needs, or fails to protect and instead does harm, where do we draw the line? I don’t really know the answer to this. But I do believe that the Almighty Father loves his daughters and does not delight in their suffering.

In my opinion, a women should submit to Christ first and then to her husband.
Submission should never be out of fear, but only out of Love.
01-02-2016 06:18 PM
Terry
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
They were forbidden to show compassion, or care. If they did, they'd be noted as deviants. No; to survive the LC system, you go to meetings, mouth platitudes, and go home. In the LC, shepherding and care is when you convince someone else to go to a meeting.
To show genuine compassion apart from the ministry is not encouraged. It can happen, but generally LSM publications have become a crutch to many. As a result there's not knowing how to care genuinely and sincerely apart from the publicatons. In my experience a word of encouragement would be to call on the Lord 3x.
01-02-2016 01:58 PM
aron
Watchman Nee on freedom of thought and expression

Nee wanted to "allow Chinese Christians to express themselves freely about the content of the Bible", and "return to the plain sense of Scripture as the timeless and timely word of God." At least that's how I understand the quotes in Dongsheng John Wu's book on Watchman Nee. (p.27,28)

If Chinese, under decades of Western imperialist oppression, could be liberated and read the words for themselves, think and talk about it, and accept it according to their norms and values, why can't every one else? If Chinese could pursue subjective experience in Christ, why can't women? Why can't the pastor in Podunk Community Church look to God, to see what to speak about on Sunday morning. Why does this freedom in Christ Jesus threaten some people so much?

Instead, "No, we all have to be absolutely identical" See footnotes in Revelations 2 and 3. Identical to what? To you?

Paul said, "imitate me, as I imitate Christ". Paul didn't force imitation, rather he imitated and encouraged others to see Christ in his actions. As much as you see, follow; if you don't see, don't follow. Paul never imposed "oneness". That is the oneness of Babylon - "If you don't have the mark, then you can't buy, sell, or eat."

Paul said, "Am I not free?" We can repeat this: men, women, blacks, whites, Barbarians, Scythians. Gentiles and Jews. Chinese. Dockworkers. Mulattos. Free. We are free. If we make distinctions today, and impose new conventions in a misguided attempt to find order and structure in a world of flux, to me this says that we don't trust the Spirit, but rather desire the freedom of a cage, and the peacefulness of a museum display case. No noise, no dust, no motion, no change, no bothersome uncertainty. No need to turn to the Spirit except what cereal to have for breakfast. Other than that, it's all figured out ("interpreted") by Big Brother.
01-02-2016 01:38 PM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
Spiritual sisters who can write are just presenting subjective assessments, no more real than anyone else's. But they're no less real than Witness Lee's subjective impressions, which I believe is what scares the blendeds to death.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Galatians 3
27 For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's descendants, heirs according to promise.
There is no male nor female. What would it be like if we had a meeting and said, "Jews only can speak; Gentiles sit quietly in the back"?, or "No slaves allowed in this meeting! Slave-holders and free-men only!" Would we not be making distinctions? So why say that when sisters speak forth their subjective impressions of Christ, that it is of some inferior measure? Aren't we making distinctions here, contrary to the apostle?

Of course the apostle Paul himself said that he preferred if sisters were silent in the church, and do not teach, but Paul was nodding to the times. Paul wasn't going to set a slave free (Onesimus) if the society held him as a bondman. And Paul wasn't going to overturn social conventions vis-a-vis the accepted roles of women and men.

Or, was Paul really contradicting himself? There is no male or female, except when females try to speak - then there's distinction? I doubt it. Paul didn't care about male or female, black or white, rich or poor, young or old. But he recognized the parameters that society had set, and wasn't going to let the freedom in Christ Jesus be a wedge into existing class structures, to put society at uproar.

But social conventions have turned. So if we today in church make social or class distinctions, opposed to society, what supports this? Our religious notions and concepts, not the truth. We are now driving wedges, contrary to Paul's example.

Put another way, the society has finally caught up with the truth revealed in scripture (see Col 3, below). There's no longer slave nor free, no longer black or white, no longer male or female. If someone can do the job (work, think, write, cook, speak, add and subtract, hammer, teach, fly a plane, whatever) then we make no distinctions.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Colossians 3
9 Do not lie to one another, since you laid aside the old self with its evil practices, 10 and have put on the new self who is being renewed to a true knowledge according to the image of the One who created him-- 11 a renewal in which there is no distinction between Greek and Jew, circumcised and uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave and freeman, but Christ is all, and in all.….
This section in Colossians is followed by a long speech on the duties of everyone according to God's selection: children, fathers, wives, husbands, mothers, slaves and masters etc. God has made distinctions among us; we are what we are. BUT we should make no distinctions among ourselves. The "new self" and "renewal" is a new set of eyes, where we can both see the situation - political, social, economic, whatever - and honor it, yet also see that God's love obliterates these temporary phenomena. So we do what we do, "as to the Lord".

Watchman Nee was at least circumspect enough to hear the voices of women around him. Either a) his circumspection overturned some divine law, and corrupted and undermined his ministry, or b) if his ministry was legitimate, and indeed aided by the experienced counsel of these many women, then his supposed followers (Lee and the Blendeds et al) have created their new distinctions, to oppress whole classes of believers. I'm not sure how they can have it both ways, here. It's either one or the other.
01-02-2016 12:17 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
New Beginnings, keep writing! It will help your mind and heart become clear. And free.

Read John chapter 10, it is the story of the Shepherd laying down His life for His sheep, that they might be free. The LC system, in principle, is little different from that of the Pharisees of old, which held God's people in a temporary "prison" until they heard the voice of their Shepherd.
Thank you for the encouragement Ohio, I still need.

And thank you for the reading assignment. I was considering asking for some. Students of truth need great teachers.
01-02-2016 11:05 AM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I have always believed in an omniscient God. He knows all things and plans all things according to his perfect purpose. I have always known in my heart that only God can know all things and that mankind was never designed to understand all the mysteries of the universe.

God created us a unique, intelligent, and creative beings. When we allow our Lord to come into our lives, He uses us to bring light into a dark world. He fills us with hope and compassion that is so powerful, that we cannot stop it from outpouring and touching the lives of the people all around us. Each of our subjective truths are powerful and valuable to the Lord's work in this dying world.

How could I ever bring myself to take the subjective truth of one man as the objective truth. One man could never know all the mysteries of the universe. Where there is no subjectivity, there is only darkness.
New Beginnings, keep writing! It will help your mind and heart become clear. And free.

Read John chapter 10, it is the story of the Shepherd laying down His life for His sheep, that they might be free. The LC system, in principle, is little different from that of the Pharisees of old, which held God's people in a temporary "prison" until they heard the voice of their Shepherd.
01-02-2016 09:30 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
Spiritual sisters who can write are just presenting subjective assessments, no more real than anyone else's. But they're no less real than Witness Lee's subjective impressions, which I believe is what scares the blendeds to death. If word got out, and sisters started to think, and feel, and give vent to their impressions, what might follow that? The cataclysm - the deluge! The abyss!

No, light. They're afraid of the light. Because then, in the outpoured light, their own subjective impressions would be exposed for what they really are. No better than anyone else's.
I have always believed in an omniscient God. He knows all things and plans all things according to his perfect purpose. I have always known in my heart that only God can know all things and that mankind was never designed to understand all the mysteries of the universe.

God created us a unique, intelligent, and creative beings. When we allow our Lord to come into our lives, He uses us to bring light into a dark world. He fills us with hope and compassion that is so powerful, that we cannot stop it from outpouring and touching the lives of the people all around us. Each of our subjective truths are powerful and valuable to the Lord's work in this dying world.

How could I ever bring myself to take the subjective truth of one man as the objective truth. One man could never know all the mysteries of the universe. Where there is no subjectivity, there is only darkness.
01-01-2016 09:09 PM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
And forgive me sister New beginnings, I'm exhausted. I'll continue to write all that Jesus said in the bible. Meanwhile I anticipate I won't be posting on forums.

The Lord be with you always. Amen.
Spiritual sisters who can write are just presenting subjective assessments, no more real than anyone else's. But they're no less real than Witness Lee's subjective impressions, which I believe is what scares the blendeds to death. If word got out, and sisters started to think, and feel, and give vent to their impressions, what might follow that? The cataclysm - the deluge! The abyss!

No, light. They're afraid of the light. Because then, in the outpoured light, their own subjective impressions would be exposed for what they really are. No better than anyone else's.
01-01-2016 08:22 PM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Thinking back over the 10 year friendships I had with the LC sisters, I realize they never showed genuine concern for me. Of course I never told them about my abusive home. I was too scared to speak. But I now know that my abuse was written all over my face, the way I spoke and the things I would say..
They were forbidden to show compassion, or care. If they did, they'd be noted as deviants. No; to survive the LC system, you go to meetings, mouth platitudes, and go home. In the LC, shepherding and care is when you convince someone else to go to a meeting.
01-01-2016 08:12 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post

Of all the times I sat in meetings and watched precious brothers get shamed and humiliated for no legitimate reason, never once did another brother come to their side. To this day I still hate the fact that I also laughed when another brother was "getting it."
Thinking back over the 10 year friendships I had with the LC sisters, I realize they never showed genuine concern for me. Of course I never told them about my abusive home. I was too scared to speak. But I now know that my abuse was written all over my face, the way I spoke and the things I would say.

After coming together with a group non-LC Christian women just four months ago and seeing them regularly, I am beginning to learn what compassion looks like. They took one look at me and knew that I needed love. They were kind and patient with me and gently helped me begin to see the truth in my reality.
01-01-2016 07:14 PM
Unregistered
Re: My Testimony

'And I have to add, in my opinion, what is even more dangerous than a thinking, spiritual women is a thinking, spiritual women who can write.'
"YES", sister to sister.
'Beware ye of the leaven of the Pharisees, which is hypocrisy.'
'Be not afraid of them that kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do.'
'Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him.'
'Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.'
'Also I say unto you, Whosoever shall confess me before men, him shall the Son of man also confess before the angels of God:
But he that denieth me before men shall be denied before the angels of God.
And whosoever shall speak a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him: but unto him that blasphemeth against the Holy Ghost it shall not be forgiven.
And when they bring you unto the synagogues, and unto magistrates, and powers, take ye no thought how or what thing ye shall answer, or what ye shall say:
For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.'

What is even more dangerous than a thinking, spiritual women is a thinking, spiritual women who can write what Jesus said.

Dear sister, (painful).. below is what you were looking for:
'And thou shalt not let any of thy seed pass through the fire to Molech, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the LORD.' Leviticus 18;21
An abomination that men of the (idolatry) land have done is what men of '..this blending organisation....' are doing? (sons and daughters) pass thro' the fire to 'M??A' and proclaim 'I am god' (profane the name of God).

Jesus Lord and Christ, my saviour, shed His blood for me and my children. Lord save me and my children from the abominations.
And Only one is the 'father'; that is our father which is in heaven.

And forgive me sister New beginnings, I'm exhausted. I'll continue to write all that Jesus said in the bible. Meanwhile I anticipate I won't be posting on forums.
The Lord be with you always. Amen.
01-01-2016 03:35 PM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
And I have to add, in my opinion, what is even more dangerous than a thinking, spiritual women is a thinking, spiritual women who can write.
Occasionally we have had pro-LSM-ers come to this site and begin to challenge the posters here. I think they are shocked at the responses. Their manipulations don't work here.

Of all the times I sat in meetings and watched precious brothers get shamed and humiliated for no legitimate reason, never once did another brother come to their side. To this day I still hate the fact that I also laughed when another brother was "getting it."

Have you ever read Jane Anderson's opening chapter of her book, Thread of Gold? That was a real eye-opener to me. She was shamed, abused, and humiliated, and went into decades of depression until she began to speak up and write. Perhaps you could contact her on her website above. Her story is powerful indeed. She posts as Thankful Jane on this forum, but doesn't post here as often as she once did. She has helped many sisters like yourself.
01-01-2016 03:14 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post

So, can sisters function in any meaningful capacity? If no, then Watchman Nee's ministry is probably illigitimate. If yes, then what happened? Answers, please - surely one of our dozens of readers can help solve this puzzle.
Actually, I'd love to hear from our readers as well. Enlighten me.

But I do have something to say about this.

I believe that it is very true when they say that there is nothing more dangerous than a thoughtful, spiritual sister; dangerous to those who seek power and corruption that is.

I am truly grateful for all the courageous women who have gone before me and for the enlightened men who loved them. They have inspired me to find courage, seek truth, and love deeply.

And I have to add, in my opinion, what is even more dangerous than a thinking, spiritual women is a thinking, spiritual women who can write.
01-01-2016 02:23 PM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
When we were told to “drop our concepts and get out of our mind,” and when we were told to “die to our fallen self” to gain the Lord, we lose touch with our discerning hearts. If we simply live in denial of all the pain and fear in our lives, believing that it will all just float away and we will be in the “heavenlies,” then one day we will awake in an abysmal pit of despair.
This may work for LC elders who signed up for the program, but no marital relationship can operate this way. Were these part of your marriage vows? This nonsense may operate in meetings where attendance is optional, but there is no way on earth that a marriage can exist following LC/LSM rules of behavior.

Should you sit on separate sides of the room like the meetings under Nee? What if you took your credit card clothes shopping and "got out of your mind" when selecting a wardrobe for you and the children? What if you "drop your concepts" when it came to preparing healthy meals for dinner?

I believe that when we “die to our fallen self,” often we must speak up against wrong and unhealthy things. Perhaps my questions expose how stupid and manipulative these sayings are by Lee. He himself never lived by them, in fact, when it came to his family, apparently there were few rules at all.
01-01-2016 12:34 PM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Forgive me for my bitterness and brutal honesty, it is bound to show through from time to time.

I know what my husband thinks of women. He learned it from his father and it was reaffirmed by the LC. I have no desire to ask him that question at the moment.
Okay. But this thread has 600+ views over 10 days, if I can trust the little counter thingy... so beyond the 10 regulars on this site we can assume maybe several dozen other readers. So we can ask ourselves out loud, and allow anyone to answer, either privately or on this forum:

"Why is it that women were so instrumental in the formative years of the 'recovery' movement, but today are forbidden from exercising their God-given talents in any meaningful way?"

Yes they are probably inherently more sensitive vessels (generally speaking), and somewhat weaker physically (generally speaking) but what makes them functionally void, today? And why were they prominently functioning in God's 'recovery' move, 140, 100, and 85 years ago?

To me this leads to a logical conundrum. If women were not supposed to teach, then Nee's ministry, based so heavily on Guyon and Penn-Lewis and Barber and Yu and Wang and others, absorbed their repressed hysteria (or whatever disqualifies them), and was inherently unstable, and commensurately invalid. But if it was legitimate for them to lay the foundation-stones of Nee's programme, then why were they subsequently forbidden from going on, in any way, shape or form?

You then have the apparent incongruity of building monuments to the prophets that you stone to death, today. A Dora Yu or a Peace Wang or Ruth Lee wouldn't last one week in the system Witness Lee made; if they had any talents, and any burden, they'd be blasted for drawing others after themselves, for rebellion, etc etc. And this has continued with Maximum Brothers like BP and RK, who've done nothing but exhibit disdain for the spiritual capacity of LC sisters. I could give you quotes but won't bother.

So, can sisters function in any meaningful capacity? If no, then Watchman Nee's ministry is probably illigitimate. If yes, then what happened? Answers, please - surely one of our dozens of readers can help solve this puzzle.
01-01-2016 10:49 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

I’m feeling thoughtful today. My bitterness had a sobering effect and my hope bubble is slowly floating back down to earth.

There is a fine line between guidance and manipulation. This leads to another fine line between submissive versus victim. Leading even further into darkness, is the inability to distinguish pain versus pleasure. Ultimately it comes down to Love versus Fear.

In reality, love is the opposite of fear. Only perfect love can cast out all fear.

When we were told to “drop our concepts and get out of our mind,” and when we were told to “die to our fallen self” to gain the Lord, we lose touch with our discerning hearts. If we simply live in denial of all the pain and fear in our lives, believing that it will all just float away and we will be in the “heavenlies,” then one day we will awake in an abysmal pit of despair.

I think I can finally say that I am thankful for my experience in the LC and my painful marriage. I needed to feel the deepest pain and fear before I could know what love is.
12-31-2015 10:34 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
One thing to consider, and even publicly consider in front of your husband, is why did the 'recovery' movement so prominently include women in its formative years, while today, 100 years later, no woman can function at all?

Madame Guyon, Dora Yu, Peace Wang, Ruth Lee, Margaret Barber, Miss Groves (Barber's peer), Jessie Penn-Lewis, Mary McDonough (tripartite man): all of these women played formative roles in the lives of Nee and Lee as they grew. Yet today none of them would be allowed to give a Lord's Day talk, or even teach privately.

If you ask your husband this, not in the way of confrontation or antagonism, but in a genuine quest to find an answer, he may consider. I mean, what is the answer, here? Maybe there is a good one, that I haven't come up with yet. Possible.

Just asking questions, gently and genuinely and openly, is a good start. Your husband has a logical mind, designed by God. The reflexive, don't-think-don't-ask program of the LC has suppressed it, but it is merely latent. Begin to gently poke it and it will emerge like a small green sprout in the sun.

Happy new year. May it be the year of many small beginnings. Zechariah 4:10 (NLT)
Forgive me for my bitterness and brutal honesty, it is bound to show through from time to time.

I know what my husband thinks of women. He learned it from his father and it was reaffirmed by the LC. I have no desire to ask him that question at the moment.

In an attempted to end on a positive note, I will say that I hope with all my heart that the Lord does save my husband for the sake of my children.
12-31-2015 07:54 PM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
The Local Church program is one of silence and intimidation. And the women have it worst of all, by an exponential factor.
One thing to consider, and even publicly consider in front of your husband, is why did the 'recovery' movement so prominently include women in its formative years, while today, 100 years later, no woman can function at all?

Madame Guyon, Dora Yu, Peace Wang, Ruth Lee, Margaret Barber, Miss Groves (Barber's peer), Jessie Penn-Lewis, Mary McDonough (tripartite man): all of these women played formative roles in the lives of Nee and Lee as they grew. Yet today none of them would be allowed to give a Lord's Day talk, or even teach privately.

If you ask your husband this, not in the way of confrontation or antagonism, but in a genuine quest to find an answer, he may consider. I mean, what is the answer, here? Maybe there is a good one, that I haven't come up with yet. Possible.

Just asking questions, gently and genuinely and openly, is a good start. Your husband has a logical mind, designed by God. The reflexive, don't-think-don't-ask program of the LC has suppressed it, but it is merely latent. Begin to gently poke it and it will emerge like a small green sprout in the sun.

Happy new year. May it be the year of many small beginnings. Zechariah 4:10 (NLT)
12-31-2015 04:33 PM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I feel that I must write again, for the sake of the broken sisters. I hope that some will find their way here, and that my story will give them hope...
We all applaud your courage to be able to write your thoughts, and display them for examination. The Local Church program is one of silence and intimidation.

And the women have it worst of all, by an exponential factor. "Don't think" is pressed down on you like a thousand-pound brick.

But God gave you a brain and a heart. You've discovered that this is real and true and you're acknowledging that. He who has begun the journey in you will carry it through. Your efforts are indeed feeble, as are mine and the rest, but Jesus promised us help. He said that the Comforter would come, and aid us (see e.g. John 14). Paul echoed this when he said that we don't know how to pray, but that the Advocate from above will come and help us in our weakness (Rom 8).

Lastly, the promise of the Lord is clear, and firm: those who seek will indeed find. If you take Him at his word, and pursue the promise found in Him, I daresay you'll not be disappointed.
12-31-2015 02:27 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by UntoHim View Post
Bless you for posting this sister! We ALL need this kind of hope and encouragement, especially for the new year coming upon us tonight!

Hang in there sis! Your LCD brothers and sisters are here for you, to pray for you, encourage you and help you in any way we can.

Your brother who is unto Him
Thank you for your encouragement to keep posting! I need it.

I suppose I should have added to the list of things that bring me hope, that I carry you all around with me in my pocket (via the smart phone), obsessively checking for more words of wisdom. But I thought that might sound too silly.

The sun is shinning brightly today on my cold, snowy home.
It is just so BRIGHT!
12-31-2015 12:08 PM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Peace & Happy New Year!
May we all find new beginnings this year.
Yes indeed! I can hear much hope in your words!

As the angel announced at His first coming,
Do not fear!
For, behold, I bring you good news of great joy!
Which will be for all people!
Because a Savior is born to you today!
Who is Christ the Lord!

12-31-2015 11:48 AM
UntoHim
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I am in God’s hands now and I know that he will meet all my needs. I have found proof in the Word of God of his unfailing love for me.
Bless you for posting this sister! We ALL need this kind of hope and encouragement, especially for the new year coming upon us tonight!

Hang in there sis! Your LCD brothers and sisters are here for you, to pray for you, encourage you and help you in any way we can.

Your brother who is unto Him
12-31-2015 11:34 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

I feel that I must write again, for the sake of the broken sisters. I hope that some will find their way here, and that my story will give them hope.

I have been in a dark place that seems so endless. I never knew how much pain was locked in my heart. There is no fight left in me. I have completely surrendered and continue to surrender daily.

I find small fragments of joy and peace around me. I begin my day in the Word of God. I play my piano and sing praises to my King. My sweet sister in Christ is supplying me each day with text messages full of scripture, prayer and encouragement.

The Lord is using my children to speak to me. My 9 year old boy came into my room while I was reading my Bible and asked me what I was doing. A bit exasperated, I told him that I was trying to figure out what God is going to do in my life. My son then said, “Oh, come on mommy, only God can know that.” I had to laugh.

I think I am beginning to understand what my next step in Faith must be. It is absolutely terrifying. But I am in God’s hands now and I know that he will meet all my needs. I have found proof in the Word of God of his unfailing love for me.

As I lay awake restless in the night, I find my thoughts drifting to things that I have always hoped for but never seemed possible. As these thoughts become tangible in my mind, I find just a little more hope. One day, the Lord will bring me to a place where I am never afraid.

Peace & Happy New Year!
May we all find new beginnings this year.
12-29-2015 10:46 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I feel peace now. I have let go of so much uncertainty. I may be too weak to pursue my Savior right now, but knowing that my friend and her husband will be pursuing my family for the Lord gives me absolute peace...
I can say without equivocation that the best thing I did, post-LC, was seek Christian fellowship. Besides my personal faith, and my experience of Christ in the Bible, Christian fellowship is the bedrock of my life. Fellowship is the protection of the flock, from the snares of the enemy.
12-29-2015 08:04 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
NB,

Here's a testimony of someone who struggled to find her way, outside the LC. Many, many have gone before you. The same Spirit will guide you.
Perfect timing for this, thank you.

I finally met with my friend, the pastor's wife last night. I was able to speak to her openly without sugar-coating it all, as I have the tendency to do.

I feel peace now. I have let go of so much uncertainty. I may be too weak to pursue my Savior right now, but knowing that my friend and her husband will be pursuing my family for the Lord gives me absolute peace.

Apparently, my friend and her husband have had experience helping people coming out of abusive groups. I find it simply amazing how our God arranges our circumstances.
12-29-2015 07:00 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

NB,

Here's a testimony of someone who struggled to find her way, outside the LC. Many, many have gone before you. The same Spirit will guide you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by finallyprettyokay View Post
After we left the LC, my husband and I tried out several different churches, of different types/sizes/age groups/practices. He did okay with it, mostly, and I did not. Eventually, I just sort of lost hope and turned away from God.

Lots of years went by. Through a community volunteer project, I met a man who is the pastor of a church in our town. I really liked him, liked his humility. My husband started going to that church, but I still wouldn't go.

Well, I started having some time talking with him, telling him my story. One of the things I said to him was that Christianity (including the LC) had been like an abusive marriage to me, that I was O-U-T and not going back. And he said to me, if I had been in an abusive marriage, and got out of it, would I really never want to be married again? Wow, that got me. Well, yeah, I would, if the right guy came along.

So, this man that became a very good friend helped me come back to God, and back to His people. Now we go to that church (gasp, a denomination) and I love it. Like anything else, it is not perfect, but it is good. It's a denomination that actually encourages people to use the good brains God gave them. Imagine!

I think one of the worst things drilled into our souls in the LC was that we would never again 'fit' anywhere else. Not in what we considered 'Religion' and not in what we considered 'the World'. It is exactly like an abusive spouse telling the abused spouse 'You are lucky you have me. No one else would ever put up with you, you would never have anyone but me'.

Please, let me say that again. It is exactly like an abusive spouse telling the abused spouse 'You will never fit anywhere else'.

It is a control tactic, plain and simple. It was used against us. To keep us in line. It is a lie. We CAN 'fit' in, in other places. It CAN be a good 'marriage'.

Please, please, please understand I am not saying everyone should hurry up and find a 'church' or a group or anything else. I AM saying, DO NOT believe that lie. Please, just don't.
12-28-2015 05:48 PM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
What could be a better testimony of love to my husband than a joyful wife.
And a major, huge, exuberant "Amen" to that!
12-28-2015 04:38 PM
HERn
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
Forgive me for my lack of Faith. I never realized how utterly broken it was from my experience in the LC.

It turned me away from the Word of God. My perception was clouded.

The truth is clearing my vision. Slowly, I am being drawn to the Word and finding clarity rather than confusion and I feel joyful.

What could be a better testimony of love to my husband than a joyful wife.
Your comment caused me to realize that when I was in the recovery we took more care to have faith in the Ministry rather than the bible. The bible was just something to support the Ministry.
12-27-2015 01:42 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Forgive me for my lack of Faith. I never realized how utterly broken it was from my experience in the LC.

It turned me away from the Word of God. My perception was clouded.

The truth is clearing my vision. Slowly, I am being drawn to the Word and finding clarity rather than confusion and I feel joyful.

What could be a better testimony of love to my husband than a joyful wife.
12-27-2015 07:08 AM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by HERn View Post
The Lord understands your situation as a wife, and has great love for the "captives".
This reminds me of Paul's fellowship in I Corinthians 7 ...

Quote:
Were you a slave when called? Don't be anxious about it. (But if you can gain your freedom, avail yourself of the opportunity.)

For he who was called in the Lord as a slave is the Lord's
freedman. Conversely, he who was free when called is Christ's slave.

You were bought with a price; do not become slaves of men.

So, brothers and sisters, in whatever condition you were called, there let them remain with God.
The bolded part above is the real message. The goal of the LC program (and, for that matter, every man-made system in this world today) is to bring us under human subjection and bondage. Those who are most free in this world today, are not those skipping on the beach, dancing in the party, or cruising in their luxury yacht, but those who have been set free within their hearts by the Spirit of the Lord while in any circumstance of our Father's choosing.

Reminds me of Paul and Silas late at night singing and praising in prison, after they had been publicly beaten unrighteously. (Acts 16)
12-27-2015 12:28 AM
HERn
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I wish I could. But I cannot clearly see an exit anywhere.

The truth has set me free but this is only a state of mind. Physically I am still a captive.

How can I love from a place of fear.
I'm sorry that I posted that under your thread. It was not directed at you. I understand the difficulties of leaving when family is involved. My exit took several months and I was the husband. Theoretically we should be able to love from any place, but in some situations it is impossible without grace. If you've never read Corry Tenboom's book the Hiding Place she writes about love in a difficult place. Please be patient and allow the Lord to work out an exit. The Lord understands your situation as a wife, and has great love for the "captives".
12-26-2015 10:10 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by HERn View Post
If the elders in your LC think like this, then quickly leave the closest exit.
I wish I could. But I cannot clearly see an exit anywhere.

The truth has set me free but this is only a state of mind. Physically I am still a captive.

How can I love from a place of fear.
12-26-2015 03:52 AM
Unregistered
Re: My Testimony

'Some of the leaders in the recovery follow WL in a cult-like way by saying we don't need to speak of anything except what was written by WL, just be a WL tape recorder, only speak the ministry.'
trained dogs. declare themselves 'gods'
12-25-2015 06:40 PM
HERn
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terry View Post
It's not authentic because it's not your experience. Many can testify to your experience. When you prophesy, it's not your testimony nor experience. It's what is culturally acceptable to group think. In this specific application of group think, it's whatever is published by LSM.
It wasn't always this way. There was a time where instead of prophesying, there was testifying according to your daily experience of Christ throughout the week. Presently Holy Word for Morning revival negates what is authentic and sincere. In my experience, public speaking is difficult. With preparation something can be spoken for HWFMR, but it's not authentic. It's someone else's words and not necessarily my experience.
Some of the leaders in the recovery follow WL in a cult-like way by saying we don't need to speak of anything except what was written by WL, just be a WL tape recorder, only speak the ministry. If the elders in your LC think like this, then quickly leave the closest exit.
12-25-2015 11:20 AM
Terry
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I did prophesy occasionally, although this was always a struggle for me. It never felt authentic.
It's not authentic because it's not your experience. Many can testify to your experience. When you prophesy, it's not your testimony nor experience. It's what is culturally acceptable to group think. In this specific application of group think, it's whatever is published by LSM.
It wasn't always this way. There was a time where instead of prophesying, there was testifying according to your daily experience of Christ throughout the week. Presently Holy Word for Morning revival negates what is authentic and sincere. In my experience, public speaking is difficult. With preparation something can be spoken for HWFMR, but it's not authentic. It's someone else's words and not necessarily my experience.
12-24-2015 07:48 PM
Ohio
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
I have to say, it is an awkward dynamic in an online community such as this.

Nameless, faceless people discussing such deep and personal things. I know it was probably a bit uncomfortable for you all to reach out to someone in such desperate need. I am eternally grateful for all of you and what you have done for me. Sorry to sound cheesy, but this is a Christmas I will never forget.
Peace and Merry Christmas to you also!

And here is the message announced by the angel of the Lord to you:
Do not fear, for behold I bring you good news of great joy for all people!
Because a Savior was born to you in the city of David, Who is Christ the Lord. --
(Luke 2.9-11)
How can we be silent when people are hurting? This is what this forum is for. God bless you and your family.
12-24-2015 12:55 PM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

I have to say, it is an awkward dynamic in an online community such as this.
Nameless, faceless people discussing such deep and personal things. I know it was probably a bit uncomfortable for you all to reach out to someone in such desperate need. I am eternally grateful for all of you and what you have done for me. Sorry to sound cheesy, but this is a Christmas I will never forget.

Peace and Merry Christmas!
12-24-2015 10:51 AM
New Beginnings
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by aron View Post
So forgive them, bear with them, be patient and kind to them, and you will provide the righteous God a vehicle to extend the same mercy to you. "As you do to others, God will do to you."
.
This is why I needed so badly to see the "whole picture" objectively. My family and I are broken people. I cannot blame them for being broken. Knowing what really happened allows me to forgive them and love them all the more.

This will have to be a daily practice for me and won't be easy. But now that I understand, I cannot hold on to resentment.
12-24-2015 08:47 AM
aron
Re: My Testimony

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I was seeking purpose and structure..
Not to over-generalize, but it's natural for young adults to want excitement, newness, and to experiment with reckless living and doing the opposite of what our parents and "society" demands. Yet soon thereafter we yearn for stability and structure.

The LSM local church, initially, seems to fit that desire to a "t". The problem eventually becomes that it is SO structured that you can't breathe! You can't think, or grow, or experiment. It has all the structure and stability of a museum, or a cemetery. You get purpose, allright, but it is someone else's purpose and plan, not yours. Thus the ill-fitting aspect of it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I met my husband and he showed me the Word of God. And then he showed me the LSM...
The Word of God becomes an entry point for the teachings of LSM. Then a sleight-of-hand manoeuvre follows, in which the Word is left behind and one is ensnared and indeed mesmerised by "the ministry", which although strongly related to the Word in many aspects, is not related to the Word in many others. See my comments, below.
Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
I was told that my feelings were wrong. I was told they were satan’s attacks. I became stuck in a cycle of shame and negativity. This is such a key point. “DON’T BE NEGATIVE!”
This is indeed key; it is essential to the defense of the LC thought-control programme. Any attempt to examine it objectively, and point out flaws, inconsistencies or lacks, is called being "an opposer" or "an attack". Yet the LC thought-programme is built upon pointing out the flaws and lacks of every other! Thus, one is led to conclude that a) the LC has the only valid thought-programme in existence, and b) anything that might challenge point 'a' is intrinsically invalid, i.e. sourced from your fallen human "feelings".

Yet the fact that the Bible is merely a means to an end can be seen where the LSM's LC 'church-life' deviates from the Biblical script. There are literally dozens of examples; I won't bore you. Peruse this site sometime.

Okay, here's one, if you insist. "It is the age of small potatoes; the age of spiritual giants is over." We were told this upon Witness Lee's demise. This is entirely from oriental culture, and has no biblical analog whatsoever that I can see. No attempt was made to connect it to scripture. Yet it was accepted without protest or question, because it was essential to the preservation and continuation of the hermetically-sealed LC thought-system.

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Beginnings View Post
It is hard not to fall back into the trap of shame and negativity...
Many of us do, often. That is part of the struggle. Look at Peter! He followed the Lord daily for several years, yet one night he ended up in darkness, weeping bitterly with confusion, shame and sorrow. Do you think your journey is exempt from such failures? Good luck with that!

The key, for me, is 'don't give up'. The enemy wants you to quit. "Curse God and die", per Job's wife's advice. No- "whether I live, or whether I die, I am the Lord's". This was Paul's advice, and it is a good word.

Secondly, forgive others. If you forgive others' failures, God will forgive yours. Jesus said this repeatedly. This is not an invitation to failure and sin; no it is rather an acknowledgement that no matter how we struggle to "be holy, as your God is holy", the sinners nearby us are much closer in proximity, while we yet live in the flesh of sin, than the holy God in heaven. So forgive them, bear with them, be patient and kind to them, and you will provide the righteous God a vehicle to extend the same mercy to you. "As you do to others, God will do to you."

Peace & God bless.
12-23-2015 06:38 PM
Unregistered
Re: My Testimony

Dear sister,
I assume I'm much younger than you but please know I'm praying for you. He will provide everything you need as you seek His kingdom and may you find comfort and peace in Him. Praying for your entire family.
12-23-2015 01:19 PM
New Beginnings
My Testimony

My Testimony
By New Beginnings

I think it is time for me to give a testimony. This is extremely uncomfortable for me to be in the spotlight so to speak. However, I believe my testimony could potentially touch the lives of other sisters and it will also be a valuable step in my own healing process.

I was 19 years old when was first exposed to the LC. I had been a wild, free spirited teenager, loving and accepting everyone, very vulnerable. After a few years living in the drug-culture, I was seeking purpose and structure. I met my husband and he showed me the Word of God. And then he showed me the LSM. I remembering my first reaction to the ministry writings was complete confusion. It made no sense to me at all.
Then came the day I met the saints. My husband brought me to a LC wedding. Wow, there it was in front of me, the divine romance. It wasn’t long before I was captivated by the beauty of Christ and his church. I was a young girl in love with Jesus and in love with my husband for bringing me there.
All through my engagement and the first year of my marriage, I was more or less happy. I attended many meetings and fulfilled many of the requirements of the ministry. I did prophesy occasionally, although this was always a struggle for me. It never felt authentic.
When my son was born, there was an instantaneous change in me. A mother’s intuition they call it. This is a very real and powerful thing. It began to tell me that something was very wrong. However the more my intuition called to me, the more trapped I became. I was told that my feelings were wrong. I was told they were satan’s attacks. I became stuck in a cycle of shame and negativity.
This is such a key point. “DON’T BE NEGATIVE!” In the early years of my marriage, I remember arguing with my husband, pleading with him to understand that it is not wrong for me to have feelings. I was told I was crazy and stupid.
Now I want to say before I go on, I do not presume that all LC homes are abusive. Although I believe there is a likelihood that some are. This is only my experience.
Sisters have an amazing ability to forget pain. Take childbirth for instance, I have four beautiful children so I know this well. Women in abusive situations find a way to survive. I hid the pain, denied it, I distracted myself from it. I did everything I could do resist the negative truths in my situation. In the end, after 12 years. I had no self-confidence, sense of self-worth or love for myself.
Now here is where Faith comes in. Faith is such an abstract concept for me. I struggle with it greatly. I am such a concrete thinker. Yet the Lord showed me what Faith can be for me. For me, it was tiny steps out of my comfort zone. I take these steps feeling very afraid but knowing that I must. A huge step for me was to accept a leadership position in a new Christian homeschool Co-op. This connected me with other Christians and gave me just a little more self-confidence. Around this time, the Lord began arranging my circumstances in a ways that I could not ignore.
One very key event for me involves my brother-in-law. For most of the time that I have known him, he never said but a few words to me. I always perceived this must be because he didn’t like me. Very recently though, he opened up in conversation with me. The reason he never spoke to me was because he couldn’t. Wow! In fact my husband’s entire family struggles in communication. But my brother had left the LC years ago. He is opening his mind and learning so much.
This fact in itself gave me a glimmer of hope. But what my brother did next rocked my world. He stood up for me in the presence of my husband. He expressed his concern for the condition of our family life. He revealed how damaging growing up in an abusive situation really was. And he looked my husband in the eyes and told him, “You should listen to your wife because you have a very smart wife, you don’t know how lucky you are.”
Looking back on my life, this was probably the only time I have every had a man stand up for me.
Now I still have a long road ahead of me and I don’t know how it is going to end. But confidence and faith seem to have a snowballing effect. Step by step, day by day, my faith grows. It is hard not to fall back into the trap of shame and negativity. But I have learned something valuable recently with the help of some persistent and kind brothers here on this forum. I had to accept my negativity. I had to meet all the pain and fear and hopelessness head on. I had to declare to myself that my negativity is not wrong. The reason that caused my negativity was wrong. I had to accept that I was a victim. This was so painful, but only from this desperate place could I ever find the Faith that moves mountains.

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