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Old 06-21-2019, 09:20 PM   #1
Hannah
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Posts: 17
Default How this 2nd gen came to leave the LC

Second gen, here. I avoided the boards for years when I left the LC. In the last year I became a lurker and now here I am registered and sharing my unedited story

As early as 4th grade I questioned "is the local church THE church?"

In late HS and college I didnt like praying, performing, prophesying etc. I was encouraged by my dad, actually, to stop doing anything that felt like show or routine. There was a q and a at the college conference and I asked about this and he gave me that answer publicly. Looking back, that was pretty bold on his part. I honor that. ❤

I kept staying in college because there were 3 older sisters who took amazingly good care of me, one had been with me since elementary school as a mentor, another my serving one in Anaheim (she moved to Cleveland). They took care of me as a person there was no agenda. They gave me dating advice, helped with HW, I played hooky from meetings at their house, heck I could seek refuge there even if they werent home.

In high school in Anaheim it did not take me long to figure out I was a project and I rejected that HARD. I wasnt going to pray or read with anyone, especially if they didnt seem to know or care about me in any real way. I was not encouraged to attend the FTT, that wasnt conversation in my home. I was relieved. If it was my choice then my folks would have trusted me. I will say, there were 2 or 3 young sisters who took care of me as a person.

In Cleveland,through college, I felt free to be me. But I also avoided the campus work. It was in this time that I questioned why there was only one sanctioned Bible and LSM the pushed publication.

Right out of college i moved to Korea to work at an international school as a young life coordinator, discipleship leader and teacher. I was the only "believer" of my kind in a sea of diverse Christians. It rocked my LC world. There are genuine believers outside of the LC? I can be "fed" at a Baptist service? I can learn from believers who dont read the RV? I was there for 2 years. It was there that I saw what the body of christ was. I came back to Cleveland, unaware of any issues and spoke in a LT about what I had come to believe and experience the body of Christ to be.

Still straddling the LC and christianity I moved to NYC and spent some time with the saints at Columbia where I was in school and connected a bit with Ricky Acosta who in his own way cared for me in a very practical non LC way. Then the quarantine happened and it rocked my world. How could brothers, who claim to be God's real representation on earth bring legal suit? How could "the church of the age" be like this. And if this is the church that has the up to date speaking be OK with treating Gods people like this then I am screwed because everywhere and everyone will disappoint. Where do you go from there?

After a year in NYC, still straddling but more out of the LC than in I moved to Baton Rouge. My fiance was there and I felt to give the church there a try but I simultaneously told him I was also not sold and was looking elsewhere. My husband was set on the LC. For 2 years I flip flopped between the LC and other churches. I attended the LT, I can enjoy worship just about anywhere and then high tailed it out of there for any messages and speaking. I had no desire for anything LSM. I actually refused to read anything but the Bible (I did very little of that) because I didnt give a damn about what other people had to say about the Bible. I didnt trust it. And I was in CONSTANT inner turmoil. This turmoil began after college and continued for nearly 6 years!

I also knew the elders in BR signed a letter condemning Cleveland, the very city and the very saints that raised me, helped teach me about God, and cared for me in ways I cannot express. I didnt trust them. There were a few sisters in BR who cared for me and I developed relatively normal relationships with. But I knew I couldn't bring up questions I had about the LC and LSM. I will add, I knew no one. My weekends the first few months before I married were spent in drug stores so I wouldn't be lonely. They provided some companionship that I am still thankful for, and one of those sisters is one of my dearest friends now.

The final straw for me was one Sunday I was parked in the BR mtg hall lot sobbing because the thought of going in brought me no joy, just angst.

That was my long departure. It was sealed as I made my home in a Vineyard church and began to see what a healthy church looked like. It took a few years of inner turmoil even there but the Vineyard in BR is where my soul/spirit/mind could be a rest. As I learn what church can be I know that the LC, as it is now, wont be that way. I also began connecting my heart for social issues with my faith and learned the two can co-exist and even "should." My church encouraged that. I saw a concern for children and youth, a desire to understand why kids leave church and faith, and how our church was committed to creating an environment that care deeply for children. I embraced my value and worth as a woman, it is not determined on my marital status or whether I ever have.children. that would mean God's value of me is conditional, which it isnt. I grew confident in a faith represented in isaiah 58. All of these things stood in stark contrast to the LC party line. Finally I was in a place that had a heart for humanity, not to gain members, not to sell publications, not even to save them. But simply to see them as God does, strive to love them as God does. I learned it was OK to challenge my pastor, to ask question, to demand more from him and from our faith community. I learned that faith is pretty simple, the LC made it too complex, too dependent on performance. It is all pretty simple: love.

Yes, living that out isnt easy. But I can get behind living a life that learns to love. And I can get behind raising my children that way.

There was no question in my mind that I wouldn't raise my kids in the LC. My husband and I were at odds about the LC since we started dating in 2001. We had many explosive and painful arguments once we were married. Eventually we agreed to do our own thing and to trust God in each of us. Everything in my mind told me I was doing it all wrong, I should do what my husband did. Except, he prefers to be alone so going to meetings on his limited time off wasnt his cup of tea �� I knew to go where he wanted me to go would crush me and I wanted to protect my kids from the superiority and performance nature of the LC. My dad, again, helped me out tremendously. It wasnt anything earth shattering, he just told me to honor my own heart. And then when my own kids come of age to allow them to trust their own heart.

Things with my husband began to shift in small ways 2 years ago. On his own he began to join us at church, but I knew it wasnt his preference. This last year larger shifts have taken place(in a good way). I am now free to share all of my old experiences and my thoughts. So after 11.5 years of marriage, in a way, we are starting from the beginning.
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