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Introductions and Testimonies Please tell everybody something about yourself. Tell us a little. Tell us a lot. Its up to you!

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Old 05-24-2017, 06:52 AM   #1
Fuji
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Default Hello: finally sharing something.

Hey guys.

I have been here for a long time and have posted before a few times without registering.

I am really thankful for the Lord and those who keep this forum coming.
I believe many saints in the LC who are troubled often come here to find comfort and encouragement.

I don't know why I finally start sharing a bit. I don’t want to share too much of my background but with (some of ) the LC authorities constantly monitoring this forum and pressuring members not to come here to fellowship with others, it upsets me. What is it for? Protecting the ministry? The Church is about Christ and His people, not Christ and your ministry. I recall the nights I was so heart-broken that I just cried alone and crying to the Lord for what I have seen in the LC.

But I love the saints in LC very much. I have never regretted my time with them. There was a time I struggled to leave, but after crying out to the Lord with prayers for nights, I knew He wanted me to stay. I made a lot of good friends and spiritual growth there, and although it came with lots of pain and hurt, I wouldn't exchange it for other things. Then it came a point where I knew I had to leave - it was like a spiritual instinct telling me to move on from within, and again after nights of prayers, I could not be more sure it was the Lord the entire time who said it’s time to move on. My LC friend used to tell me, how do you know you are “turning to the Spirit? Well, for the mind set on the spirit is life and peace”. and yes, I had a tremendous sense of life and peace when I decided to leave LC, whereas staying in the system gave me dryness.

I want to share a few reasons, besides the popular ones like “worshipping Lee”, “only reading their own materials”…why I left.

- Again, many LC saints love the Lord and the Church deeply. But, sometimes, when I fellowship with them…I almost feel like many of them are having like a spiritual bipolar disorder that they don’t even know. Forget about the always-judgmental ones. There will always come a time, even the most loving ones, will say something of a typical LC language of an “us vs them” attitude- such as, how they are more overcoming then the others. The problem is I know they have no bad intentions deep down. Perhaps, a little pride, like we all have. But this shows how deep the problem is - even the most innocent saints say these things and do these things, and they cannot realize this problem, because everyone around them is doing it. You can see how “brain-washed” the atmosphere has been. I have a dear friend who, on one hand loves to drink and occasionally skips meetings while saying no need to be "religious", but at the same time he would say that I must see that ground of locality is the highest truth, and that I must follow into God's highest ministry, and that I should tell those in the denominations to say an amen after every sentence...but he IS a great brother.

- Being zealous for the ministry doesn't mean you are being zealot for the Lord. Your ministry is not the Lord. Although they always speak of how denominations are divisive, I want to say that for the many, many years that I have been a Christian and have been to 1x churches (No I am not church hopping but it's due to the nature of my work - and by being I mean fellowshipping) in my life I have never EVER seen a church like LC that mocks and belittles other non-LC believers and churches so much as LC does. It is sickening. I really honestly don't know how they can NOT get hurt when they do things like this. LC wants to repeat Nee’s saying, to have a “Normal Christian Life”, but man. When you feel normal to talk crap about other Christians not in your group, it is not normal. I think there is something VERY, VERY wrong in them when they say these things without feeling disturbed or hurt. I for one know Jesus Christ is being hurt when His people are being despised by His own people. I constantly have to share this with my close friends today to heal my wounds.

Let me give you some examples. Almost every time when I go to their meetings , big or small - when we are supposed to share our salvations testimonies, the testimonies shared by them were always not of how they became saved into Christ, but how they became SAVED INTO THE LC CHURCH LIFE. “Wow my previous church is crap! My previous church spiritual view is just so low!”

Well...LC members always like to laugh at people who got baptized in so-called “denominations” (btw I am still so confused. They are tons of non-denominational churches or house churches out there that are not part of any organizations) are baptizing into that particular church for church membership. While this is far from truth, aren’t they doing the very same thing? Something is wrong when many of them see one’s testimony of salvation = testimony of being saved into the LC Church life. JW much…

- I have spoken to many non-LC people to defend LC...well, not to defend their specific doctrines but just to tell them LC has many precious things to offer and I share with them how it has helped me grow, etc. Yet sometimes I feel like, I wish they could do the same.They always demand people to understand them and spend a lot of time defending their ministry, but I wish they could do the same to other Christians.

- I believe that many people who have been in LC would agree they really have many good teachings and like Igzy said, they could have made a much more powerful and general impact to the Church universally if they didn't lose it at pride. And this is just my very personal opinion: sometimes I wonder if I am still unable to find a both loving and biblical church, will I go back to the LC? My answer is - NO. This is just my personal choice under my conscience. And I may change, who knows. One thing I must say that is during my time in LC, their pride sometimes sneak into myself too and there were times I really said to myself, perhaps LC really is the best church or the only true church in the world. Now when I look back, I cannot believe I once thought that. But those thoughts that were in my mind were sounding alarms to me. That was the time I knew I needed to leave in order to regain a balanced view. And while they have hurt me, I have also hurt my family for thinking their truths are lower than LC’s. LC also used to say, flee from temptations. Mostly used in a context of sexual immorality. Well, some may disagree my view here but I see putting myself in LC as a temptation to build up my pride in disguise. I don’t want to be hurt and hurt others so no, I won’t remain in LC. In short, I’d rather be in a church that may seem not as zealous and insightful, but loves the Church with the purest motive, than in a church like LC that claims the headship of Christ while looking down the corporate bride of Christ. Sometimes LC gives me the impression like, let us make ourselves into another separate woman and the Lord will marry us, the better woman.

And let me repeat once more - I love the saints in LC dearly. MANY of them are the loveliest Christians I've met. No church group is perfect and I can certainly write another post only to discuss and appreciate LC 's wonderful work. But to all of us, when we love the Lord, we love all His people. This isn't about Christ and anyone's ministry. It is about Christ and His Church. His Kingdom. I cannot wait until that day when we face Christ and all our labels of "LC","non-LC" are gone. And we enjoy our eternal union with Him as one to the fullest. Apology for writing so much. Peace and grace.
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Old 05-24-2017, 08:15 AM   #2
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Default Re: Hello: finally sharing something.

Fuji,

Thank you for posting...finally! and welcome!

I would like to give you my view of the "search for church."

During my first year or so of meeting with the LC, of all people, Benson Phillips shared something like this: "If you concentrate on Jesus, the church will 'come out'. If you concentrate on the church, nothing will 'come out'". I don't think Benson practices this anymore, but I do.

I have shared this several times because it was one of my most vivid memories of that joyous time when I first began to experience the Christian life in a way I never thought possible.

Slowly Benson (and others, WL) led us into concentration on the church itself and the decline began and has never ceased. We began to lose the joy of the Lord which was substituted for what we were told was the "glorious church life."

I could go on and on but I think you know where it's going. My conclusion is that Benson was right. I now believe that there is altogether too much "church talk". There is too much emphasis on finding the "right church." In fact, there is only one church. Everything else called a "church" is organized and managed by humans, by a board of trustees, a board of deacons, etc. I'm not saying this to be critical of the organized churches out there, but just to point out a fact and add some perspective to the topic. Some are called denominations, etc., but all, including the Local Churches, are an outgrowth of the desire of Christians to fellowship with one another as the Bible commands. This is not a bad thing. It's scriptural. Yet Christians often believe denominations are the same as the universal church. I believe this is a mistaken way to look at "church" which perpetuates an endless search for the "right church."

Certainly there are a multitude of Christians in the denominations. These Christians ARE "the church". The denomination is only the structure.

As Benson said all those years ago, if you "concentrate" on Christ, the church will come out. It's not up to man to figure out how to "do church". Our job is to love the Lord, our God, with all our hearts, souls and minds. We are told to follow the Lamb wherever he goes and look to Him to lead us to other Christians for fellowship. The scene today is so complex and most often based on what men think the church should be that we look for guidance from our own understanding, wherein we were told to "lean not". Instead, search the Scriptures. Talk to Jesus. Ask Him to lead you to other Christians for fellowship. Don't worry about "church." Let HIM be your Shepherd.

It may be that you need to "sit tight" for awhile and get to know Him on a more personal level. Pour your heart out to Him. Tell Him what you think. Tell Him what you want. Don't depend on a "search for church" to grow in Him and know Him. As Paul said "That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His suffering."

Most of all, understand that what HE calls "church" and what WE call "church" are often two different things. He said "I will build my church." We should get out of His way, and let Him build HIS church HIS way. He will lead you to fellowship in his own time and in his own way. We can be at peace and trust the one who died for our sins. We may hit a few bumps (what WE call bumps) in the road on our journey, but he is able and qualified to lead us through tough times which will surely come.

This forum is populated to a large extent by a collection of believers who were led in and out of a place that was not healthy. Likely our walk with the Lord was compromised by our "search for church." Now it's time to "concentrate on Jesus" since we know what doesn't work.

I hope this helps you.

Nell
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Old 05-24-2017, 09:40 AM   #3
Fuji
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Default Re: Hello: finally sharing something.

Dear Neil,

Thank you so much for your reply.

In fact, I cannot agree more what you have said. Focus on Christ, the Church will come out. And yes, there is only one true church, and that's why, I cannot remain in any group that claim to love Christ yet despises the Church.

Perhaps I made it a bit confusing. I am now fellowshipping in another place, somewhere I never thought I would end up with years ago, and I have never been so in love with the Lord and His people before! However, I just suddenly decided to write my past experiences in LC, perhaps now I feel "safer" to share...

Again, this is the place that years ago I don't think I would end up with (especially with the "post-LC state", if I were like you said, too focus on "church" itself. It's funny! And, why do I enjoy my fellowship now? Because Christ is honoured as the head by this group of people all the time.

Everything we share, we speak, we sing, it's all about Christ. There's little focus on ourselves. The spirit of grace of humility is prevalent. I am really thankful.

However, I rarely share this with my LC friends, because I worry about them thinking I'm looking down on them or abandoning their way. I love them as much as I love the saints in any other groups. I just don't want them to be offended. I'm scared of losing our friendship.

I'm not sure about others, but I hope that those who are struggling will not be discouraged, but indeed, take Neil's words --- Seek Christ first. Christ is the one who builds the church, so focus on the builder instead of the building. It's like in order to bear good fruits, we should focus on the true vine first and the fruit will come.

Looking forward to more fellowship. Hope one day I will meet many of you in person!
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Old 05-24-2017, 11:41 AM   #4
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Default Re: Hello: finally sharing something.

Fuji, I echo much the same you said in your initial post. Every year or two when I visit my parents in Southern California, I'll meet with the locality they meet with. Always enjoy seeing the brothers and sisters, but some of the stuff that is spoken in regard to "the denominations", I can only take so much. There are still quite a few brothers and sisters meeting there who were there when I was a teen and pre-teen.
I do think generally in regard to organized Christian assemblies whether it's a local church, community church, or any denominational church, there's an identity crisis. To come out of respective Christian fellowships and just meet informally as Christians is a test to one's comfort zone. Many have an identity towards a particular fellowship and don't want to break from that identity. I've heard the phrases (shaking hands over the fence). That's just rubbish. Just greet and receive one another according to Romans 15:7. Don't let assemblies and fellowships become an obstacle.
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Old 05-24-2017, 01:28 PM   #5
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Default Re: Hello: finally sharing something.

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Originally Posted by Terry View Post
I do think generally in regard to organized Christian assemblies whether it's a local church, community church, or any denominational church, there's an identity crisis. To come out of respective Christian fellowships and just meet informally as Christians is a test to one's comfort zone.
How very true...This is also my observation over the years (not just on LC) Many do based their identity not in Christ but in the group that they are in.

Brother Terry, I suppose you are not an official "LC"er now? And it's great that you join their meetings with your parents when you visit. May I ask do they welcome you fully or do you feel there is sometimes a gap in between? Some of my LC friends who know I no longer am actively involved in LC seem to respect my choice (some wish they could "walk away" like I do) while I can definitely feel the disappointment of some and it really stresses me out - I often don't know what to do but to avoid the topic....Not that I need to be approved by everyone, but do you have any advice on maintaining a healthy relationship with those brothers and sisters? I never want to forsake any chances of fellowship.

Thank you!
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Old 05-24-2017, 06:19 PM   #6
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Default Re: Hello: finally sharing something.

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Originally Posted by Fuji View Post
How very true...This is also my observation over the years (not just on LC) Many do based their identity not in Christ but in the group that they are in.

Brother Terry, I suppose you are not an official "LC"er now? And it's great that you join their meetings with your parents when you visit. May I ask do they welcome you fully or do you feel there is sometimes a gap in between? Some of my LC friends who know I no longer am actively involved in LC seem to respect my choice (some wish they could "walk away" like I do) while I can definitely feel the disappointment of some and it really stresses me out - I often don't know what to do but to avoid the topic....Not that I need to be approved by everyone, but do you have any advice on maintaining a healthy relationship with those brothers and sisters? I never want to forsake any chances of fellowship.

Thank you!
Not for some time. When I visit the LC ones that have been meeting in that locality more than 30 years remembers me. I've never said anything to them that would make me unwelcome. Each time my family and I visit, one of the elders has me stand and introduce my family since we're visiting.
If we cannot conduct ourselves with humanity and love one another unconditionally it is very difficult to have healthy relationships.
In my opinion when our interaction in the local churches is limited to "ministry peak", it doesn't foster an environment to have a healthy relationships.
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Old 05-25-2017, 06:52 AM   #7
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Default Re: Hello: finally sharing something.

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Originally Posted by Fuji View Post
I have never EVER seen a church like LC that mocks and belittles other non-LC believers and churches so much as LC does. It is sickening. I really honestly don't know how they can NOT get hurt when they do things like this. LC wants to repeat Nee’s saying, to have a “Normal Christian Life”, but man. When you feel normal to talk crap about other Christians not in your group, it is not normal. I think there is something VERY, VERY wrong in them when they say these things without feeling disturbed or hurt. I for one know Jesus Christ is being hurt when His people are being despised by His own people. I constantly have to share this with my close friends today to heal my wounds.
I agree - pointing out others' defects, however true, doesn't "bring life". It's just a kind of back door to pride. And it's constant in the LSM LC church life. Innocuous statements like "not many Christians appreciate this" and "most Christians don't see that". It's in pretty much every message; try to read a life-study message without finding it panning "Christianity" or "most Christians" in some form or another.

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Originally Posted by Fuji View Post
Almost every time when I go to their meetings , big or small - when we're supposed to share our salvations testimonies, the testimonies shared by them were always not of how they became saved into Christ, but how they became SAVED INTO THE LC CHURCH LIFE. “Wow my previous church is crap! My previous church spiritual view is just so low!”.
This is the other side of the same coin. When people sing a hymn, one member will stand up after the singing and say, "This hymn is so rich!" Always seem to be puffing up the "rich ministry of our dear brother", or the glorious church life.

God sees no iniquity in the church. . . okay then why do you constantly belittle your fellow members of the faith? I believe another kind of subjectivity run amok, in the 'We're okay but you're not okay' mantra, can be also seen in the LSM versions of church history. Somewhere, according to Nee & Lee, it all went wrong, and God therefore raised up shining lights in every age. But if you look closely, in order for the progression or 'restoration' narrative to continue, the narration has to flip the script. For example, the Great Recovery of justification by faith (the Reformation), actually ushers in the Great Apostasy of denominations. Luther saved the church by recovering truth but his truth brought in "Lutheranism", which is one of the daughters of the harlot. So which is it? Well, that depends. Depends on if you're in the 'recovery' or 'degradation' cycle of your narrative.

Again and again in the LSM narrative you see The World According to Me. At best it's illogical and reflexively self-centered.
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Old 05-25-2017, 11:25 AM   #8
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Default Re: Hello: finally sharing something.

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I agree - pointing out others' defects, however true, doesn't "bring life". It's just a kind of back door to pride. And it's constant in the LSM LC church life. Innocuous statements like "not many Christians appreciate this" and "most Christians don't see that". It's in pretty much every message; try to read a life-study message without finding it panning "Christianity" or "most Christians" in some form or another.

This is sad and frustrating. LC's I've visited whether in California or Washington state, it's predictable at least one person will prophesy as such in the prophesying meeting. As I've stated on the forum multiple times before, locally I brought it to the lead elder's attention. He didn't see it as an issue.

Others in the LC's might discount it as a lack of growth. It would be counterproductive to correct the brother or sister speaking these phrases and just need to give grace.
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Old 05-25-2017, 11:34 AM   #9
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Default Re: Hello: finally sharing something.

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God sees no iniquity in the church. . . okay then why do you constantly belittle your fellow members of the faith? I believe another kind of subjectivity run amok, in the 'We're okay but you're not okay' mantra, can be also seen in the LSM versions of church history. Somewhere, according to Nee & Lee, it all went wrong, and God therefore raised up shining lights in every age. But if you look closely, in order for the progression or 'restoration' narrative to continue, the narration has to flip the script. For example, the Great Recovery of justification by faith (the Reformation), actually ushers in the Great Apostasy of denominations. Luther saved the church by recovering truth but his truth brought in "Lutheranism", which is one of the daughters of the harlot. So which is it? Well, that depends. Depends on if you're in the 'recovery' or 'degradation' cycle of your narrative.

Again and again in the LSM narrative you see The World According to Me. At best it's illogical and reflexively self-centered.
Aron's post could easily be applicable to the double standards thread. "God sees no iniquity...." That's usually the out-clause when one expresses criticism of quarantines.
However there was no bringing up "God sees no iniquity" when Witness Lee was uttering "poor poor Christianity".
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Old 05-25-2017, 11:46 AM   #10
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Default Re: Hello: finally sharing something.

Fuji,

I can't say that I would be welcomed back like Terry. My comments have been harsher. And I have not particularly hidden my identity. They have almost surely known who I am from when I started on these forums in 2005.

I don't think they would exclude me. But they would be watching me like a hawk. They wouldn't want me to open my mouth.

Oh, some of the people would come and say "hi" and we would have some chit-chat. But I don't respond well to LRC lingo any more. Last time someone asked me if I agreed with Witness Lee on a particular point, I thought about that one for a minute and said that I did not. Not because I wanted to be contrarian. But because I did not agree. (I really wish I could remember the issue. But it has been almost 10 years now and I just don't remember.)

A relative said that they believed that having a better vocabulary made Christ more real and his experience better. I had to openly disagree. Vocabulary is not the basis for the real experience of Christ. It is only a differentiator if you need to feel superior. And personal superiority is not an experience of Christ.
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Old 05-25-2017, 12:45 PM   #11
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A relative said that they believed that having a better vocabulary made Christ more real and his experience better. I had to openly disagree. Vocabulary is not the basis for the real experience of Christ. It is only a differentiator if you need to feel superior. And personal superiority is not an experience of Christ.
Wow, I cannot believe he or she actually said that. How ridiculous it is to limit our Lord to "vocabularies". And will deaf and mute people or illiterate people experience less of Christ ? (Ok maybe I'm stretching a bit here)

Anyways, I'm so sorry for what you have gone through.

I can only say for me, often I am unable to express fully how I feel about LC to my LC friends. I want to be completely honest to them but I don't want to hurt their feelings or to hurt their loyalty to LC (which is wrong in my opinion, we are loyal to the Lord only). Also I don't want to hurt our friendship. Meanwhile, many perhaps "weep" for me and think that I have gone astray, and have lost the highest vision. It used to be a burden for me but now, I have nothing more to say but I'll just leave it to the Lord. Let Him be the judge and decide who has the "highest truth". When He returns, He will reveal what's on our hearts.

On the other hand, a few of my LC friends come to me (because of my view and choice) to tell me how they truly feel about being in LC. These are the ones who have been in LC longer than I do, but have never been able to share with any LC saints their concern with the ministry because of fear. Our friendship grows stronger because of our ability to discuss our journeys in LC openly.

And yes I also wonder if my identity is known, what they will think of me. I'm sure there are at least a few people whom I know that come here to read. But again, I need to drop this burden. I love all the saints from the bottom of my heart and if they think of me differently, I can only send my pain to the cross.
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Old 05-25-2017, 01:26 PM   #12
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Default Re: Hello: finally sharing something.

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A relative said that they believed that having a better vocabulary made Christ more real and his experience better. I had to openly disagree. Vocabulary is not the basis for the real experience of Christ. It is only a differentiator if you need to feel superior. And personal superiority is not an experience of Christ.
In the early 90's this was a teaching of W. Lee in the context of the so-called "high peak" theology. He taught us that improved vocabulary and theology made our experience of Christ richer.

During this period of time Lee's ministry and teaching was in a state of serious decline. He had just smeared the reputations of many godly men and excommunicated them for exposing Lee's immoral and abusive son Philip who was running LSM at the time.

W. Lee made a similar comment about the Lord's Table meeting stating, "the better the picture, the better the reality."

Seriously? "Better" bread and "better" wine made for a better remembrance of the Lord?

I doubt.

.
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Old 05-26-2017, 02:45 AM   #13
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There was no bringing up "God sees no iniquity" when Witness Lee was uttering "poor poor Christianity".
What's the difference between "poor, poor Christianity" and "the glorious church"? They're both composed of redeemed and regenerated believers. The sum difference lies in their relation to the ministries of Nee, Lee, and now the Blendeds.

Likewise, was Luther a champion of the faith or a harbinger of denominationalism? That depends on your story arc - are you in the 'recovery' mode or the 'degradation' part? That's what I meant about subjectivism run amok.

As one FTT worker put it so neatly, "When we do it, it's not hierarchy, but when others do it, then it's hierarchy."
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Old 05-26-2017, 11:55 AM   #14
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Fuji,
I can't say that I would be welcomed back like Terry. My comments have been harsher. And I have not particularly hidden my identity. They have almost surely known who I am from when I started on these forums in 2005.
I will say in Southern California, my opinions towards former leading ones and disfellowshipped brothers are not widely known as they are in the Puget Sound area.
Nearly 10 years have passed I had been in a short/but a ongoing dialogue with a NW elder mentioned here on one of the threads. I won't say who, but I've provided documents to him accessible on the internet (Bill Mallon's December 1987 letter, John So's testimony to Manila 1990, John Ingall's Speaking the Truth in Love, etc). Whether his heart was touched, I don't know. Personal opinions on the texts were not expressed. His concluding word was a needing to honor the feeling of the brothers. I think many serving brothers feel bound in this capacity. There's no liberty to express what they really think without suffering some form of repercussions.
As far as Southern California, this certain locality I am known only as so and so's son who grew up in this locality from 11-18 years of age after our family moved from Anaheim.
In the years passed, there's a sister I know whose husband I was close to prior to his passing. Somehow she knew of my participation on thebereans.net "public square forum". If there's others who know of my forum activity, it has not been addressed directly nor indirectly.
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Old 05-26-2017, 11:59 AM   #15
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What's the difference between "poor, poor Christianity" and "the glorious church"? They're both composed of redeemed and regenerated believers. The sum difference lies in their relation to the ministries of Nee, Lee, and now the Blendeds.

As one FTT worker put it so neatly, "When we do it, it's not hierarchy, but when others do it, then it's hierarchy."
Exactly Aron. Who among us doesn't require redemption to be reconciled to God?
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