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Calling All Saints! This board will serve as a meeting place for ex Local Church members to reestablish contact with other former and current members. GUESTS may post here as well.

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Old 01-03-2015, 04:09 PM   #1
Intothewind
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Default Life after the LC

To continue the discussion from the lurkers thread, since now with an account I can't really consider myself a lurker.

So far one difficulty is deciding who and to what extent to keep ties with. I have decided that anyone who I can have a genuine conversation with, who have admitted to troubles that we have talked about in a real way(and also who then were open, receptive, and nonjudgmental to hearing me talk about why I no longer wish to meet), and who I otherwise enjoy spending time with I will continue to seek out even if they are meeting with the LC. My boundaries will be any attempts to encourage going to a meeting.

I have already had a few frank discussions with some folk that I am simply not interested in attending so and so YP meeting, despite badgering to attend to "see everyone that misses you". The excuses are something along the lines of everyone their "being busy" and that they would really like to see me.
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Old 01-03-2015, 07:03 PM   #2
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I can relate to you, because I’ve been in that position myself, and I’m somewhat still in that position. Since I haven’t completely left yet, my move has been from total immersion to being on the “fringes” of the LC. How did it happen? I can’t really say for sure, but there were I few things that I did deliberately.


First of all it started with the realization that the LC was effecting me negatively spiritually, and even my mental health to some degree. I was constantly stressed out with the burden of going to meetings all the time and pretending like it all was benefiting me when it wasn’t. So I got to the point that I had to do something for myself, so I started telling people I was “busy” (which was really true). At first there were some who were a bit taken aback by that, but after a while I guess everyone gave up on trying to get me to go to meetings.

I’ve noticed that there is this idea in the LC that if people cannot be easily influenced such as pushing them to attend meetings, it’s better not to “waste your time” with them. In my situation, it wasn’t too difficult to distance myself from the LC. Actually, no one even asked me why I wasn’t attending meetings like I used to. Had they, I probably would have told them my reasons, but I didn’t feel like it’s worth bringing up otherwise. I feel by them not knowing that I’m “negative” gives me the opportunity to have a positive influence on those I know in the LC. There are many there looking for answers, maybe even a way out. Because there is so much positive reinforcement of LC ideas among members, it’s not an easy thing for someone to come to the point where they see there is something clearly wrong with the LC.

Of course, all the time there are opportunities for LC members to see there is something wrong, however, the obvious problems are always minimized and reasoned away. For example when someone stops attending campus Bible study, because they don’t feel comfortable having the RcV Bible shoved down their throat, everyone might be told that this person had too many opinions about Bible versions and that’s why they stopped coming. When a longtime member leaves to attend a different non-LC church, everyone might be told that person became “lukewarm”. When someone questions Lee’s teachings, people might say that person is “in their mind”. Anyways the point of saying all of this is that I think for those of us who are in the position of wanting a way out, there is no positive reinforcement for our decisions. There will always be feeble attempts by LC members reasoning away our decisions saying that we are being “petty” or “negative”, etc.
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Old 01-03-2015, 08:59 PM   #3
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Life has been interesting, if not more lonely so far. It is nice to not have to tow the LC along...I always didn't feel like the real me when I had to talk about it(actually even individuality is very warped in the LC). I remember speaking about the gospel and comparing it to the spontaneous sharing with peers about a restaurant one enjoyed. I realized for myself I couldn't genuinely tell people that-and I have had to also convince myself that this is not my fault-still doubting and difficult for me. Life certainly would be easier(but more enjoyable?) if I could just go along with everything!
I wanted to also address what you said in the other thread. I can understand completely, there was frequently this underlying feeling I had of putting on and act or feeling "fake" inside. It wasn't in related to my faith or experiences of the Lord, rather, it was being pushed to do things that I had no business doing.

There have been many meetings where I was pushed to "prophecy" on something that I either didn't enjoy or understand. I learned to just make stuff up on the spot to share in the meetings. What made me feel so bad about it all was all the "amens" I would get, even though I knew very well I was just rambling nonsense. Sadly to say, I don't think these experiences are uncommon.

On the subject of feeling lonely and individuality, it's hard to know what to think honestly. I can say that because of my experiences growing up in the LC, it is hard to have the same kind of meaningful relationships as others do. People just have no idea of what kind of system the LC is. For example, I mentioned before, because of all the rules in the LC, I have never dated and I am still single. At my age if I were to go tell friends that, they would probably be quite taken aback, so I have to keep that to myself. What's worse is if I tell people that my church didn't allow dating, that also gives them a negative impression of Christians in general. There are other issues as well. I remember growing up and not celebrating holidays, how I would be ridiculed by friends and school and everybody else I knew. It is was not an easy life growing up, and I'm sure many of the side effects of this are still there. When I see the way some people have been effected by the LC, I would never pass judgement on someone who turns to a "lone wolf" lifestyle, or has trouble following the Lord after leaving. In my case, I have tried to come to terms with what I am up against as I move forward in life, and also at the same time I know the the Lord is with me, and He knows whats best for my life.

I was conditioned to feel like I was "different", so as such, my relationships gravitied towards those I knew in the LC. As I distanced myself from LC meetings, those relationships disappeared. In a certain sense, I feel that the LC is a type of social group that meets social needs of members. With many of the YP or college students, this is especially true. If they didn't have close friends in the LC, they would likely not be very much involved. By the way, the irony behind this all is that as saints get older, buddy-buddy relationships are strongly discouraged. WL calls natural relationships "honey" and says their should be no natural affection in the church life. I have heard the BB's speak to this effect multiple times. When I see that the older saints don't do as much together like the YP, I don't feel so bad about losing some of the relationships that I have lost.
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Old 01-04-2015, 09:45 AM   #4
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By the way, the irony behind this all is that as saints get older, buddy-buddy relationships are strongly discouraged. WL calls natural relationships "honey" and says their should be no natural affection in the church life. I have heard the BB's speak to this effect multiple times. When I see that the older saints don't do as much together like the YP, I don't feel so bad about losing some of the relationships that I have lost.
You have said a lot, and have great insight Freedom. We left in our fifties, and one of my wife's chief complaints was not having any real friends. The Recovery redefines what being a brother or sister means, and the friendship side of it is basically eliminated.

I encourage you to take inventory of, or "treasure hunt" all the positive things of your upbringing as you slowly step away from the system. Instead of missing out on Xmas, present it as being saved from all the commercialism. I believe this habit saves us from any bitterness.
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Old 01-04-2015, 03:22 PM   #5
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This is a message for Freedom and those young men like him on this website. I cannot even begin to tell you how much my heart hurts for you as you describe your feelings of social isolation! While I do believe that some--and perhaps most--of this has been caused by the LC, I also know (from years of experience with young people) that today's young people have formed a society that is hard, cold, and, yes, even cruel and heartless. You have not dated and feel disturbed and bothered by this. BUT, I have counseled many Christian young men and women who HAVE dated and have been rejected and--to a great degree-- destroyed by it. So--what I am saying is that your situation is NOT the worst-case scenario by far. It is lonely and very much alone, but I have spoken with many young people who are deeply scarred by the social world around them. You are unscarred. You are untried and lonely, but not wounded and scarred by another. Consider yourself blessed in many ways. Honest! If you wish to date/socialize with Christian women, simply to go a Sunday School class of a good Baptist church, Pentecostal church, or any non-denominational and evangelical church. Choose one of a rather large size in order to be sure there will be young people there in good number who are ALSO searching for what you are searching for. I can absolutely guarantee you that there are many young women desperately seeking Christian young men to date. Get involved and listen to how they talk and watch how they act. In this way, you can select those who are most Christ-centered. And I also suggest E-harmony online dating. Several young people I know have experienced success in dating after joining. Whatever works for you, do it. I wish you all the best as you go forward! May God help you to find that special someone to join you in your life journey in the Lord!
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Old 01-04-2015, 03:27 PM   #6
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Ohio: That is excellent. I don't harbor any bitterness to any particular people(and consider some dear friends and others I wouldn't mind hanging out with in a non church setting). I am glad I grew up around supportive people and didn't have the chance to indulge in some things. I would probably be a lot worse off if I had owned a gaming system when I was younger, for example.(I don't recall the folks specifically forbading this one though! So it eventually was due to lack of serious interest)

Freedom: Not to poke or anything-but have you sat down yet and figured why you are still in, if even on the fringes?
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Old 01-04-2015, 03:58 PM   #7
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Freedom: Not to poke or anything-but have you sat down yet and figured why you are still in, if even on the fringes?
I can't say with 100% certainly why I haven't left, but there are a few reasons that I can think of. The main reason is that I don't feel like the time is quite right yet. This is because there is a particular service I am involved in where if I just got up and left, it would leave a big gap that they would have a hard time filling. A second reason is for the sake of family that is still in the LC. My family might give me a hard time, but more importantly, if the brothers found out in any way that I am "negative" they might try to put family members in the middle of things, which I would hate to see happen (I have seen these tactics used on people before).

I am fully aware that my days in the LC are numbered. I think that at the right time, the opportunity will present itself. I am not in a particular hurry to get out since I am very uninvolved in the LC. If I was going to meetings all the time, things might be different, I might have just wanted to drop everything cold turkey. Anyways I think the situation is different for everyone. If you want more details feel free to send me a PM.
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Old 01-04-2015, 04:24 PM   #8
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A second reason is for the sake of family that is still in the LC. My family might give me a hard time, but more importantly, if the brothers found out in any way that I am "negative" they might try to put family members in the middle of things, which I would hate to see happen (I have seen these tactics used on people before).
This is a very unfortunate Freedom, but a very real concern: i.e. LC manipulations and controls.

I am actually dealing with this right now with a family member. Even though we have both been out of the LC for years, unless we address this problem directly, this Lee-leaven is still operating in us. A family member of mine really thinks the problem is all mine, when I decided to put my foot down and not allow him to manipulate me by shaming me into submission. That was the LC Modus Operandi which he and I lived with for years under Titus Chu and Witness Lee, and I suppose I've had enough of it for one life time.
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Old 01-04-2015, 04:56 PM   #9
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This is a very unfortunate Freedom, but a very real concern: i.e. LC manipulations and controls.

I am actually dealing with this right now with a family member. Even though we have both been out of the LC for years, unless we address this problem directly, this Lee-leaven is still operating in us. A family member of mine really thinks the problem is all mine, when I decided to put my foot down and not allow him to manipulate me by shaming me into submission. That was the LC Modus Operandi which he and I lived with for years under Titus Chu and Witness Lee, and I suppose I've had enough of it for one life time.
Ohio, it's good to know that we're not alone in regards to these issues. Over the course of my life, I've seen these types of situations pop up now and then, and the example that I saw set forth by LCers is to just pressure people a little bit and they will cave in.

I think a lot of this starts with the notion that people who leave the LC are "backsliders". This idea fails to acknowledge people who leave because they are fed up with the system or who leave for other reasons. Many in the LC have the notion that they can contact people who have left and by just encouraging them to attend a meeting, everything will change. This works on some people, but there are many out there who have left who wouldn't attend another LC meeting if you gave them a million dollars.

Family is difficult because differences in how the LC is viewed can have serious effects on relationships. I've seen this within many families. One example is when kids reach adulthood, and they realize the LC isn't for them, parents aren't always able to accept that. They can't accept that because of the view that the LC holds the ministry that will "end the age" and has "unlocked the Bible". I have personally seen church kids who were manipulated by people in the LC, such that situations came up where the parents should have stood up for their children and set their foots down. Instead, they valued a good standing in the LC, over taking care of their doing what was right for the needs of their children.
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Old 01-04-2015, 06:18 PM   #10
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I have personally seen church kids who were manipulated by people in the LC, such that situations came up where the parents should have stood up for their children and set their foots down. Instead, they valued a good standing in the LC, over taking care of their doing what was right for the needs of their children.
If you want to know how exclusive church systems can damage families and children, one must take a look at the exclusive Brethren. They are ahead of the Recovery in this "journey" by about 100 years.

One such "speaking" from the Lord's present day "oracle" among the "Peebs" was a distortion of I Cor 5.11 -- if a family has a child who is an unbeliever over 12 years of age, the parents can NOT even sit at the table to eat with their child.

Imagine what damage that new "law" did to the family.
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Old 01-05-2015, 06:22 AM   #11
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... I have counseled many Christian young men and women who HAVE dated and have been rejected and--to a great degree-- destroyed by it. ...You are untried and lonely, but not wounded and scarred by another. Consider yourself blessed in many ways...
Nice contrast. The exclusive, controlling environment is somewhat over-protective (cloistered is a word that comes to mind) but it is not worst-case scenario. There are worse things than being lonely and lacking social skills.

My small experience is that to the extent that you put Christ first (NOT "Christ and the church") you will remain with some protection. Evil will not harm you, and good will find you. God is like that. This whole world is evil, but God is not without means to shepherd His children.
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Old 01-05-2015, 10:43 AM   #12
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I am fully aware that my days in the LC are numbered. I think that at the right time, the opportunity will present itself. I am not in a particular hurry to get out since I am very uninvolved in the LC. If I was going to meetings all the time, things might be different, I might have just wanted to drop everything cold turkey. Anyways I think the situation is different for everyone. If you want more details feel free to send me a PM.
Thanks for being open and honest with us Freedom. One of the main functions of this forum is for current LC members in your position to process, and this is not an easy thing to do in the confines of your own heart and mind, much less out here in cyberspace, but I can assure you that your sacrifice is worth it's weight in gold to the many lurkers out there who might be going through the exact same thing.

One thing I would encourage you to accomplish before you totally abandon meeting with the LC is to find a good, solid evangelical fellowship to meet with on a regular basis. I can tell you from personal experience that there will be a vacuum to fill, and it is best filled with solid, biblical worship and fellowship among some mature believers. Most of us oldies but goodies on this forum had to go it alone and suffered through some pretty tough times...some of us still are. I would suggest a mid-sized fellowship (maybe 200-500) that would be large enough for you to not have a spotlight on you, but not so large as to make you feel like your lost in a sea of strangers. Most evangelical churches nowadays have small "cell groups" which are pretty much home meetings where 15-20 members meet on a weekly basis for more personal fellowship.
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Old 01-05-2015, 12:40 PM   #13
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Family is difficult because differences in how the LC is viewed can have serious effects on relationships. I've seen this within many families. One example is when kids reach adulthood, and they realize the LC isn't for them, parents aren't always able to accept that. They can't accept that because of the view that the LC holds the ministry that will "end the age" and has "unlocked the Bible". I have personally seen church kids who were manipulated by people in the LC, such that situations came up where the parents should have stood up for their children and set their foots down. Instead, they valued a good standing in the LC, over taking care of their doing what was right for the needs of their children.
As one raised in the local churches, many of other church kids from my generation raised in the local churches, I would estimate 90%+ meet in non-LSM Christianity while younger generations still do.
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Old 01-05-2015, 12:53 PM   #14
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By the way, the irony behind this all is that as saints get older, buddy-buddy relationships are strongly discouraged. WL calls natural relationships "honey" and says their should be no natural affection in the church life. I have heard the BB's speak to this effect multiple times. When I see that the older saints don't do as much together like the YP, I don't feel so bad about losing some of the relationships that I have lost.
I have seen just the opposite. Maybe because the home meetings I have been in, there's a building among the older brothers and sisters. I was one who was more in a comfort zone with older brothers and sisters rather than ones from my generation.
Speaking on buddy-buddy relationships, it should be encouraged and not discouraged. As a college student going home for Thanksgiving (during the late 80's) I was impressed how my parents took care of a widow and her six children by having them over. This is a type of intimate care than cannot occur in a meeting environment.
By contrast not showing intimate care for families exposes where love is lacking.
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Old 01-05-2015, 03:18 PM   #15
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As one raised in the local churches, many of other church kids from my generation raised in the local churches, I would estimate 90%+ meet in non-LSM Christianity while younger generations still do.
Maybe it's me but I can't follow this statement. I don't even know how to ask a question about it. Confusing. Sorry. Could you clarify?
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Old 01-05-2015, 05:32 PM   #16
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I don't know if it'd be wise to join any Christian group after leaving the local church. Give your mind and heart a break, and a chance to come back to yourself, before joining any other Christian group.

And first and foremost, the first thing you should do after leaving is to learn to be a self thinker. That's the way to keep from becoming entrapped again.

Get free. Be free. Think free.
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Old 01-05-2015, 06:52 PM   #17
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I don't know if it'd be wise to join any Christian group after leaving the local church. Give your mind and heart a break, and a chance to come back to yourself, before joining any other Christian group.

And first and foremost, the first thing you should do after leaving is to learn to be a self thinker. That's the way to keep from becoming entrapped again.

Get free. Be free. Think free.
Probably the biggest issue is not knowing what "normal" is. The LC definitely not normal. The LC has taught me the "Abnormal Christian Life" It might be easy to get caught up in another group just as bad. On the other hand I know there are normal Christian groups out there.
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Old 01-05-2015, 07:01 PM   #18
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I have seen just the opposite. Maybe because the home meetings I have been in, there's a building among the older brothers and sisters. I was one who was more in a comfort zone with older brothers and sisters rather than ones from my generation.
Speaking on buddy-buddy relationships, it should be encouraged and not discouraged. As a college student going home for Thanksgiving (during the late 80's) I was impressed how my parents took care of a widow and her six children by having them over. This is a type of intimate care than cannot occur in a meeting environment.
By contrast not showing intimate care for families exposes where love is lacking.
Maybe there are some generalizations that can be made about different generations in the LC. Since I wasn't around back in the day, I don't know what it was like back then. Nowadays older saints do get together and do things, but not nearly with the frequency that the young people do. If the same standard that is applied to the older saints were to be applied to the young people, they would all be scared away. I remember being in a training and hearing the brothers condemning natural relationships and I had the realization that this is what the LC has in store for me when I'm older if I were to stay. Of course they are not going to pressure the young people to abstain from being friends because they would lose them.

I see many older saints who seem happy in meetings because they have people to talk to, but outside the meetings they really don't have many friends, including LC friends.
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Old 01-05-2015, 07:08 PM   #19
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Maybe it's me but I can't follow this statement. I don't even know how to ask a question about it. Confusing. Sorry. Could you clarify?
Meaning the young people I grew up with in Southern California (1980's), majority of them no longer meet in the local churches. The subsequent younger generations, I have seen more of these young ones now in their 20's and 30's still going on in the local churches.
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Old 01-05-2015, 08:09 PM   #20
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Probably the biggest issue is not knowing what "normal" is. The LC definitely not normal. The LC has taught me the "Abnormal Christian Life" It might be easy to get caught up in another group just as bad. On the other hand I know there are normal Christian groups out there.
Dear Freedom, I found some genuine Jesus lovers in the LC; I'm not saying it's rare, but they are there. I'm a sick puppy; the only one I know that is normal is Jesus. I'm finding sick puppy lovers of Jesus in the so-called denomination I'm attending. So far they have never condemned others as being harlots and daughters of the whore. Last Sunday one of the pastors prayed for the other local churches that were nearby...never heard that kind of prayer in the LSM local churches!

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Old 01-08-2015, 05:13 PM   #21
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Thanks all for the support

Untohim: I did have a talk with my cousin who also left(and found out about relatives and history that was for the most part hidden from me when I was a child. haha) she took me to a place she found and enjoyed. Again, I loved meeting the people there and all, but at this point my heart just isn't in it anymore-no hunger if so to speak. So I would feel bad going just for the people since to them it is clearly more than that.

I've done some serious soul searching and in truth my outlook on the world would be closest to naturalism(no need for any supernatural being or happenings) and even humanism. I do realize if that is the case then most on here won't really have advice for the path of not being a Christian.
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Old 01-08-2015, 09:10 PM   #22
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Thanks all for the support

Untohim: I did have a talk with my cousin who also left(and found out about relatives and history that was for the most part hidden from me when I was a child. haha) she took me to a place she found and enjoyed. Again, I loved meeting the people there and all, but at this point my heart just isn't in it anymore-no hunger if so to speak. So I would feel bad going just for the people since to them it is clearly more than that.

I've done some serious soul searching and in truth my outlook on the world would be closest to naturalism(no need for any supernatural being or happenings) and even humanism. I do realize if that is the case then most on here won't really have advice for the path of not being a Christian.
Intothewind indeed then. Now I see what your name implies. I wouldn't worry about what any out here might have to say. We're just people on a forum out in cyberspace.

Fret not. I have exLCer friends that decided to let go of all the added complexities that considerations of God, and all that supernatural world brings. And they're happier than they were while in the local church.

I'm presently reading "The Passion of the Western Mind: Understanding the Ideas that Have Shaped Our World View" by Richard Tarnas. A phenomenal book. You might enjoy it too.

And just because you let go of God doesn't mean God let's go of you. Something is sustaining the awareness reading these words. And that's a mystery that doesn't allow us to honestly discount all possibilities.

Would you be so kind as to keep us updated. You might enjoy a second forum UntoHim has been so gracious as to provide for Alternative Views. It's passworded, as displayed. Ask for it. Come down and join us there. I heard there's neopaganists, native Americans (dirt lovers), pantheists, and New Agers down there ... but haven't confirmed it.
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Old 01-09-2015, 05:33 AM   #23
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... most on here won't really have advice for the path of not being a Christian.
I tried the path of not being a Christian for several years, post-LC. It did me good. Cleansed the palate, so to speak. So I'd counsel to trust whatever path you're on at the moment. None of us control the future, or our surroundings; we just try to do our best. Wherever you find yourself and whatever you're doing is simply what it is.

Like awareness above, I've noticed that everyone on this forum is pretty different. Everyone's circumstances are different. Everyone has a unique history and response pattern shaped by that history. I daresay yours is neither better nor worse than any other. We here on earth, in the flesh, are not qualified to judge. Surely the Christian confessors have learned that, if nothing else.
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Old 01-09-2015, 06:23 AM   #24
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I've done some serious soul searching and in truth my outlook on the world would be closest to naturalism(no need for any supernatural being or happenings) and even humanism. I do realize if that is the case then most on here won't really have advice for the path of not being a Christian.
One of the reasons I am on this forum is not because I agree with all the Christianity that is espoused on this forum but because of our common background of having experienced the LC. There is more practical advice regarding your situation than you may think on this forum (see awareness' suggestion). Yes, there are some Bible thumpers who run most of this forum but there are many others who just don't agree with everything they say. I have found that this is not necessarily a "one shoe fits all" forum except as I noted --- the issue that we all have experienced the impact of the LC.
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Old 05-30-2015, 07:24 AM   #25
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... I'm a sick puppy; the only one I know that is normal is Jesus. I'm finding sick puppy lovers of Jesus in the so-called denomination I'm attending. ...

From Dave: ...Yes, there are some Bible thumpers who run most of this forum but ...
If there were a 12-step program for Christians who are recovering from an abusive Christian group, I think it could go like this:
Step 1: Admit you are a sick puppy.
Step 2: The only one that is normal is Jesus.
Step 3: Get your Bible and read it. (Thump it if you must, but the prerequisite for thumping is reading.)

We/I get into trouble when we forget that it's all about Jesus. It would be great to find a healthy Christian or two to help you find your way back to Jesus, but ultimately, a personal relationship with Jesus alone is the answer for everyone.

Along the way I let others intrude on my relationship with Jesus. Whatever is on the "alternative" forum, it should be noted that for a Christian, there is no alternative to Jesus.

John 14:6 Jesus said unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes unto the Father, but by me.

"Bible thumper" implies something negative and somewhat judgmental. If we mishandle the Bible, that's one thing. But, for a Christian, without the Bible, we lack the foundation and bedrock for our faith in Jesus. To find our way back to Jesus, read the Bible. You. All by yourself. Pick it up and read it like it was a book.

Looking among the alternatives will give you just that...an alternative.

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Old 05-30-2015, 11:55 AM   #26
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Hey Nell. Great to see your beautiful face again.

I think we should start: JA ... or Judgaholics Anonymous. It might do me some good. I come from a long history of being among, and part of, judgmentalists.
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Old 05-30-2015, 01:27 PM   #27
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Hey Nell. Great to see your beautiful face again.

I think we should start: JA ... or Judgaholics Anonymous. It might do me some good. I come from a long history of being among, and part of, judgmentalists.
Hi Awareness,

It's great see your beautiful face too...so to speak...again. (:-)

Well, admitting you have a problem is the first step! So many 12-step possibilities...so little time.

There's a good bio out there by one of us...Thankful Jane. It's always a good read when you're looking for Life after the LC. The Thread of Gold, God's Purpose, the Cross, and Me by Jane Carole Anderson.

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Old 07-15-2015, 01:06 AM   #28
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Seems like people dont read their bible the LC doesnt have rules about dating the bible does.
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Old 07-15-2015, 10:00 AM   #29
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Seems like people dont read their bible the LC doesnt have rules about dating the bible does.
The LC doesn't have rules because the LC doesn't need them. The LC has something they call "fellowship", where you get to hear the will of the Maximum Brothers for your life. You don't want to do anything apart from the fellowship, do you?
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Old 07-15-2015, 10:41 AM   #30
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Seems like people dont read their bible the LC doesnt have rules about dating the bible does.
LC rules aren't necessarily spoken, unless it's in regards to something like the FTTA (no unnecessary contact with the opposite sex). Like aron said, rules come mainly through "fellowship". There was a situation in the LC that I'm from where an elder didn't like a couple dating each other, because he though they weren't a good match. I will spare you the details, but he tried to break up the relationship (unsuccessfully). This is called manipulation, like it or not.

It's not that leaders shouldn't give reasonable advice in regards to relationships, but when they step it, it can be very problematic. Every wonder why there are so many outsiders that attribute certain undesirable labels to the LC? This is why. There are many situations where those in the LC could learn to be a bit more "normal" about things. This means not being so "legalistic" about getting everyone to try to fit a certain standard.
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Old 07-15-2015, 10:56 AM   #31
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As a bit of a side note, I've seen an unintended side effect of restrictions on dating. In the LC I'm from (a smaller LC), I know of at least 3 "church kids" who turned out to be gay. Interestingly, contact with the opposite sex was virtually prohibited, so the reasonable conclusion is that some probably felt that due to the lack of experience in opposite-sex relationships, same-sex relationships were more of their thing. Obviously this isn't what leaders were quite intending when they applied such rules on relationships. Please note that I'm not trying to make any particular statement about the decisions of these young people, I just wanted to point out that there is a lot more going on than meets the eye.
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Old 07-15-2015, 12:18 PM   #32
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As a bit of a side note, I've seen an unintended side effect of restrictions on dating. In the LC I'm from (a smaller LC), I know of at least 3 "church kids" who turned out to be gay. Interestingly, contact with the opposite sex was virtually prohibited, so the reasonable conclusion is that some probably felt that due to the lack of experience in opposite-sex relationships, same-sex relationships were more of their thing. Obviously this isn't what leaders were quite intending when they applied such rules on relationships. Please note that I'm not trying to make any particular statement about the decisions of these young people, I just wanted to point out that there is a lot more going on than meets the eye.
Well maybe so, but I know brothers, and sisters, that left the LC and admitted they were gay -- and a couple that are gay, that are still in the LC, and deep in the closet (including an elder that was slipping out for tricks with boys) -- that I learned from, that being gay is not a choice.

We're born with our sexual orientation, like the color of our skin, eyes, hair, and height. So I doubt that the dating rules caused them to be attracted to the same sex. But like the RCC the environment may have provided a convenience for it to happen.

From what I've seen close up, like with Christian family members, Jesus has no affect on our sexual orientation, no more than He does to our height, skin, eyes, etc.
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Old 07-15-2015, 03:14 PM   #33
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Well maybe so, but I know brothers, and sisters, that left the LC and admitted they were gay -- and a couple that are gay, that are still in the LC, and deep in the closet (including an elder that was slipping out for tricks with boys) -- that I learned from, that being gay is not a choice.

We're born with our sexual orientation, like the color of our skin, eyes, hair, and height. So I doubt that the dating rules caused them to be attracted to the same sex. But like the RCC the environment may have provided a convenience for it to happen.

From what I've seen close up, like with Christian family members, Jesus has no affect on our sexual orientation, no more than He does to our height, skin, eyes, etc.
Harold, seriously? So if you are born with a bad temper, or a tendency to lie, or a weakness for too much alcohol, or a mean streak, then that makes those things okay as well?

Nature doesn't determine morality. Nature is supposed to submit to morality. The whole principle of being spiritual is that we rise above our animal instincts.

Jesus came to save us. What did he come to save us from if not our fallen nature? Jesus has no affect on our sexual orientation? He can affect anything he wants to.

Homosexual behavior is just one more sin, like lying, stealing, pride or being mean to people. The fact that you are born with a predisposition towards it is evidence of the fall, not that it's okay. If our tendencies were indication of what is permissible then that would mean men could have affairs with every attractive woman we lay our eyes on, since that is what we tend to want.

Let's stop falling for the cheesy, half-baked philosophies of the world.
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Old 07-15-2015, 06:50 PM   #34
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Harold, seriously? So if you are born with a bad temper, or a tendency to lie, or a weakness for too much alcohol, or a mean streak, then that makes those things okay as well?

Nature doesn't determine morality. Nature is supposed to submit to morality. The whole principle of being spiritual is that we rise above our animal instincts.

Jesus came to save us. What did he come to save us from if not our fallen nature? Jesus has no affect on our sexual orientation? He can affect anything he wants to.

Homosexual behavior is just one more sin, like lying, stealing, pride or being mean to people. The fact that you are born with a predisposition towards it is evidence of the fall, not that it's okay. If our tendencies were indication of what is permissible then that would mean men could have affairs with every attractive woman we lay our eyes on, since that is what we tend to want.

Let's stop falling for the cheesy, half-baked philosophies of the world.
Bro Igzy I suppose we could get into a Bible battle about sex. But I don't think we should soil the forum by airing Bible laundry.

But I think we all get your point. Thanks for your correction.
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Old 07-17-2015, 01:42 PM   #35
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Bro Igzy I suppose we could get into a Bible battle about sex. But I don't think we should soil the forum by airing Bible laundry.

But I think we all get your point. Thanks for your correction.
Your restraint is clear indication of your allowing your spiritual nature to prevail.
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Old 07-17-2015, 06:10 PM   #36
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Your restraint is clear indication of your allowing your spiritual nature to prevail.
Or I was fearful of getting in the ring with the champ ...
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Old 07-18-2015, 03:58 PM   #37
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As a bit of a side note, I've seen an unintended side effect of restrictions on dating. In the LC I'm from (a smaller LC), I know of at least 3 "church kids" who turned out to be gay. Interestingly, contact with the opposite sex was virtually prohibited, so the reasonable conclusion is that some probably felt that due to the lack of experience in opposite-sex relationships, same-sex relationships were more of their thing. Obviously this isn't what leaders were quite intending when they applied such rules on relationships. Please note that I'm not trying to make any particular statement about the decisions of these young people, I just wanted to point out that there is a lot more going on than meets the eye.
On the restrictions of dating, in my own youth I witnessed double-standards at play. Yet generally, those who submit to restrictions of dating (which includes any social interactions with the opposite gender), though the intentions of restrictions is noted, the result is young people becoming socially inept in relating to the opposite gender.
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Old 07-18-2015, 08:01 PM   #38
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On the restrictions of dating, in my own youth I witnessed double-standards at play. Yet generally, those who submit to restrictions of dating (which includes any social interactions with the opposite gender), though the intentions of restrictions is noted, the result is young people becoming socially inept in relating to the opposite gender.
My restrictions of dating were taught to me as on the job training; learn as you go, sort of thing. The whole thing was a closely watched setup.

We weren't allowed alone together. We always had to be chaperoned.

Even back then I wondered, "If two devoted Christians can't be trusted to go to the movies together then what does that say about the Church they belong to?" (Like the flesh is so strong the Spirit doesn't stand a chance, and, we'd jump each other if left alone for a single little minute.) It was funny to me, but I was young and dumb, and very head in the clouds spiritual, and the whole meeting at one point prayed for it to be God's will. What was I to do? It had to be God's will -- even the dating restrictions -- romance (and love) had nothing to do with it.

But the restrictions were a very far cry from making me gay. I wasn't made like that, thank God, I conjecture. In those days I roomed with a gay brother in the basement of an elders house. He would have liked to make me gay. But just the idea of it grosses me out, and always has. I can be friends with with guys, but not romantically, or otherwise.

Come to think of it, maybe that's one reason I was able to be moved by the elder -- 'elders' on both ends, her end and mine - and an elder's wife in the middle -- to marry a sister I didn't even know.

That marriage began with LC support and required the same support to keep it going, unfortunately.

Dating restrictions? What a joke? And they don't clam to be a cult. Don't make me laugh. I may be dumb but I'm not stupid ... nor blind.

But apparently, not so back then.
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Old 09-06-2016, 09:59 AM   #39
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I wanted to also address what you said in the other thread. I can understand completely, there was frequently this underlying feeling I had of putting on and act or feeling "fake" inside. It wasn't in related to my faith or experiences of the Lord, rather, it was being pushed to do things that I had no business doing.
I too grew up in the LC. My dad's girlfriend introduced him to the lc. That was the end of life as I knew it. From tell age of 5 until 18 I was immersed I to the LC. I can remember being forced to go on college campuses to preach at the age of 14. I had some great friends in the LC, but thankfully I had never really committed to the church.

I faked everything. I.knew when I was 18 I would.get out. I hated attending meetings all the time, young people.conferences in NY during the summer.

I hated that my dad and stepmother felt that every religion but the church was bad. I hated not celebrating christmas and holidays. I hated being told that the Lord would.chose my spouse. I left at 18 and have never looked back. Both my dad and stepmother are still involved in the lc. They have an entire library of the lc books.

I hate that the LC encourages them to distance themselves from their own children.

Sigh. Thankfully I am happily married to a man that I chose. Not to someone the LC chose.
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Old 09-06-2016, 03:34 PM   #40
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Manipulation is huge in the LC. For years my brother and I were told that our mom had deserted us. Here my step mother was and had been intercepting her letters for years.

From phone calls that were listened to, and mail that had to be sorted and reviewed before we got to see it, to trying to keep us in the dark about other cultures.

I was glad that I had a strong will. I knew I needed to leave. From having saints living in our home all the time (once they asked me to return a sex book to the library! I was 14) to watching these young Taiwanese women being married to American men. Neither speaking the others language.

I was mortified that I was going to have to get married to some uber religious guy and move to Taiwan!

I know that some of the kids that I went with are still in the church today, but I hope most got out like I did.
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Old 09-06-2016, 04:02 PM   #41
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I was glad that I had a strong will. I knew I needed to leave. From having saints living in our home all the time (once they asked me to return a sex book to the library! I was 14) to watching these young Taiwanese women being married to American men. Neither speaking the others language.
Welcome to the forum! Please tell us more about your experience. Each testimony is earily similar, yet unique.
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Old 09-06-2016, 05:05 PM   #42
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Manipulation is huge in the LC. .
Yes it is, and the children suffer the worst for it. I'm sorry for what you had to go through, even when I was a zealot I felt bad about things that I saw. Children being pressured constantly to get with the program, and to perform. It was a manipulating spirit.

Thank you for having the courage to share your story. You are not alone.
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Old 09-06-2016, 05:51 PM   #43
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Yes it is, and the children suffer the worst for it. I'm sorry for what you had to go through, even when I was a zealot I felt bad about things that I saw. Children being pressured constantly to get with the program, and to perform. It was a manipulating spirit.

Thank you for having the courage to share your story. You are not alone.
I can attest to the manipulation that happens to church kids, it's all too familiar. I've been there. I grew up being forbidden to do all the normal activities that friends got to do. It produced a dependency upon the LC as well as being inadept at interacting with others.

Some eventually see through it, others don't. Those who stick around are usually prodded to attend the FTTA, thus completing their predetermined path in life.
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Old 09-07-2016, 05:27 PM   #44
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Yes it is, and the children suffer the worst for it. I'm sorry for what you had to go through, even when I was a zealot I felt bad about things that I saw. Children being pressured constantly to get with the program, and to perform. It was a manipulating spirit.

Thank you for having the courage to share your story. You are not alone.

Thanks. I'm a survivor. A least I consider myself one.
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Old 09-08-2016, 07:58 AM   #45
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Thanks. I'm a survivor. A least I consider myself one.
Yes, we are survivors. My prayer, and blessing (if you'll receive such a word) is that not only will you survive, but you will heal, and thrive. May God bless your journey.
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Old 09-04-2017, 05:25 AM   #46
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Yes, we are survivors. My prayer, and blessing (if you'll receive such a word) is that not only will you survive, but you will heal, and thrive. May God bless your journey.
Yes and amen!
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Old 09-05-2017, 08:04 PM   #47
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I can attest to the manipulation that happens to church kids, it's all too familiar. I've been there. I grew up being forbidden to do all the normal activities that friends got to do. It produced a dependency upon the LC as well as being inadept at interacting with others.

Some eventually see through it, others don't. Those who stick around are usually prodded to attend the FTTA, thus completing their predetermined path in life.
Life of a churchkid often dysfunctional and exposed to church hypocrisy.
Preferences often based on who your parents are or expressing a desire for FTTA. It's showing special attention.

If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but say to the poor man, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor by my feet,” have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? (James 2:3-4)
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Old 09-07-2017, 06:10 PM   #48
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Life of a churchkid often dysfunctional and exposed to church hypocrisy.
Preferences often based on who your parents are or expressing a desire for FTTA. It's showing special attention.

If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but say to the poor man, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor by my feet,” have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? (James 2:3-4)
My observation was that church kids almost always struggled in the LC, and had a lot of inner-turmoil in regards to whether or not they should remain in the LC. For those who did somehow manage to stay in the LC, the decision to attend the FTTA was usually for the purpose of 'proving' themselves to their parents or peers. There wasn't really any real desire to go otherwise.
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Old 09-08-2017, 02:48 AM   #49
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My observation was that church kids almost always struggled in the LC, and had a lot of inner-turmoil in regards to whether or not they should remain in the LC. For those who did somehow manage to stay in the LC, the decision to attend the FTTA was usually for the purpose of 'proving' themselves to their parents or peers. There wasn't really any real desire to go otherwise.
The whole system is designed to take away choice. First they're told, at about 8 or 10, that to avoid perdition they must believe into and receive Jesus Christ. "You don't want to burn in hell for eternity, do you?"

Then, they're told that only the overcomers will get millenial bliss. "You don't want a thousand years of outer darkness, do you?"

Then, they're told that if they're not "building the Body" then all the sentiments of love and fealty to the Lord are vain. Suddenly it's no longer about faith but rather about works.

And then they're told that any work outside the ministry of Witness Lee and Watchman Nee is vain at best, and divisive and rebellious at worst.

And at every turn, critical and independent thought are discouraged and repressed. In my 'locality' we were told that thinking only produced confusion. "Get out of your mind" was the mantra.

This is the pipeline Gene Gruhler told us about 25 years ago. All designed to push them into the service of an all-too-human publishing house in Ansheim California.

When faced with such a gauntlet, and lacking problem-solving skills to navigate it, some go to meetings once or twice a week, sing a song, share a few sentences on what they enjoyed of Witness Lee's writings, and hope for the best. But a lot of them bail, and abandon the faith entirely. This church, for its size, may produce more determined atheists than any in human history.
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Old 09-08-2017, 10:25 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by aron View Post
The whole system is designed to take away choice. First they're told, at about 8 or 10, that to avoid perdition they must believe into and receive Jesus Christ. "You don't want to burn in hell for eternity, do you?"

Then, they're told that only the overcomers will get millenial bliss. "You don't want a thousand years of outer darkness, do you?"

Then, they're told that if they're not "building the Body" then all the sentiments of love and fealty to the Lord are vain. Suddenly it's no longer about faith but rather about works.

And then they're told that any work outside the ministry of Witness Lee and Watchman Nee is vain at best, and divisive and rebellious at worst.

And at every turn, critical and independent thought are discouraged and repressed. In my 'locality' we were told that thinking only produced confusion. "Get out of your mind" was the mantra.

This is the pipeline Gene Gruhler told us about 25 years ago. All designed to push them into the service of an all-too-human publishing house in Ansheim California.

When faced with such a gauntlet, and lacking problem-solving skills to navigate it, some go to meetings once or twice a week, sing a song, share a few sentences on what they enjoyed of Witness Lee's writings, and hope for the best. But a lot of them bail, and abandon the faith entirely. This church, for its size, may produce more determined atheists than any in human history.
Church kids are abnormally sheltered from the outside world. This usually has one of two outcomes. They either reject the LC and religion entirely, or they become dependent on the LC without realizing it. I was one of the latter cases. Having been raised in an environment where celebrating holidays were forbidden and many other normal things were rejected as too 'worldly', it made it hard to relate to anyone. So there was only one thing to turn to and that was the LC. And elders were all too happy to provide their 'guidance'.
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Isaiah 43:10 “You are my witnesses,” declares the Lord, “and my servant whom I have chosen, so that you may know and believe me and understand that I am he. Before me no god was formed, nor will there be one after me.
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Old 09-11-2017, 11:34 AM   #51
Terry
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Location: Renton, Washington
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Default Re: Life after the LC

Quote:
Originally Posted by Freedom View Post
Church kids are abnormally sheltered from the outside world. This usually has one of two outcomes. They either reject the LC and religion entirely, or they become dependent on the LC without realizing it. I was one of the latter cases. Having been raised in an environment where celebrating holidays were forbidden and many other normal things were rejected as too 'worldly', it made it hard to relate to anyone. So there was only one thing to turn to and that was the LC. And elders were all too happy to provide their 'guidance'.
I would offer a third outcome, those who haven't rejected Christianity but reject the politicking and movement the LSM/LC is. Those parents of the churchkids who are more grounded in the Word than in Lee's ministry are able to provide guidance and lead their children in a way where one door closes and another door opens in regard to Christian fellowship. Instead of FTTA there's YWAM.
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