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Old 08-04-2015, 07:28 AM   #1
Unsure
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Default Trapped... Help?

Hello,

My name is Vincent. For all of the seventeen years of my life, I have been raised in the Lord's Recovery. I was surrounded by people immersed in the teachings of Witness Lee before I could walk, and had them drilled into my head ever since I was baptized five years ago. Up until about a year prior, I had accepted the Recovery as the highest way and dreamed of being an overcomer in the way Lee had described it.

Now? I. Want. Out.

And I want nothing to do with its members ever again.

However, I am currently ill-equipped to leave the flock of Witness Lee behind (The earliest I can even dream of saying goodbye to the LC is when I get into University next year... Which would involve a lot of loans). As such, unless a miracle occurs and I somehow move out of the house, I am stuck with my fanatically LC-loyal mother for at least 365 days (my father... I'm not sure where he stands anymore. He stopped going to the Sunday meetings five years ago and has been having a mid-life crisis recently). As such, I have been pretending to drink the Kool-Aid like a good little boy, all the while resisting the urge to projectile vomiting it in the face of the serving one feeding me it, smashing the bottle, and flipping the table being used to serve it (to use a... Questionably phrased metaphor). In the meanwhile, I have been collecting information on the LC's past (things like Daystar, the Lee family, etc) but that only really serves to help my case when the time I can actually leave arises. Before that, all I can do is bide my time...

But having struggled with controlling my anger all my life, I'm not sure how much longer I can wait before I lash out at the LC and do something very stupid.

Help? What should I do?
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Old 08-04-2015, 07:51 AM   #2
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Unsure,
Bless you for having the courage to come here and share your story. Rest assured you are not alone. There are many brothers and sisters here on the Forum that will be praying for you in this most difficult time. You can also rest assured that you have a Great Shepherd who cares for you, and has NOT left you as an orphan. It may seem that way, but in fact God has given you a Comforter, the Holy Spirit who not only will comfort you, but will guide you into all truth. You also have the "his precious and very great promises" (1 Pet 1:4) which he has provided for us in the living and abiding Word of God.
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Old 08-04-2015, 08:06 AM   #3
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Vincent,

Suggest telling the Lord exactly how you feel and do that every time you have these thoughts. He will lead you.
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Old 08-04-2015, 09:11 AM   #4
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Unsure,
Bless you for having the courage to come here and share your story. Rest assured you are not alone. There are many brothers and sisters here on the Forum that will be praying for you in this most difficult time. You can also rest assured that you have a Great Shepherd who cares for you, and has NOT left you as an orphan. It may seem that way, but in fact God has given you a Comforter, the Holy Spirit who not only will comfort you, but will guide you into all truth. You also have the "his precious and very great promises" (1 Pet 1:4) which he has provided for us in the living and abiding Word of God.
And brother Vincent, don't for get this. It appears to me that, you not only have all that brother Untohim listed, but, you also have, critical thinking to get you thru. Trust in that too bro. And use it.

Hang in the closet until you figure a way out.

My heart goes out to you. We will be here for you as much as we can provide.
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Old 08-04-2015, 10:10 AM   #5
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Hey Vincent,

You show a lot of courage and honesty by coming here. Rest assured God is watching over you. He's a big enough God to take care of you. Try not to worry. Bide you time. Start thinking your own thoughts, as an earlier poster implied.

Here's my suggestions:
  • Nurture your own personal relationship with God based on simple Christian truths. Keep it simple. Just talk to him and pray. Ask him to help you. Read a non-LCM bible.

  • Don't give up on God. A lot of people who leave the LCM get conscience-stricken and wander away from God. Try to avoid this path. It leads to extended time in the wilderness. Just keep talking to God.

  • Do human things. Have a hobby. Make good, healthy friends. Laugh. Relax. Have fun. Take it a day at time.

  • Think positively. Get some books on positive thinking. I recommend Joyce Meyer. The enemy is going to try to get you down. What you practice thinking about is very key. Get control of your thoughts.

  • Make Christian friends outside the LCM. If possible, join YoungLife or another good high school Christian group. My kids love that kind of thing and it's very healthy.

  • Read other authors. Formulate your own views. The LCM view is warped. There are healthier ways of interpreting the Bible and living the Christian life. Find them.

  • Sounds like you are near leaving home. At some point you are going to have to stand up to your parents and tell them how you want to live your life. It will go over a lot easier if they don't just see you going into "the world," but realize you still love Jesus, you just want to do things another way.

  • Pray every day. Keep talking to God. Stay positive and patient. Don't be angry, be determined.

We'll be praying for you. Peace to you.
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Old 08-04-2015, 11:38 AM   #6
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Don't give up on God. A lot of people who leave the LCM get conscience-stricken and wander away from God. Try to avoid this path. It leads to extended time in the wilderness. Just keep talking to God.
Excellent advise! I've heard it said that "the Bible is God talking to us and prayer is us talking to God." This is very simple but very profound. You may want to try to read the Bible without "pray-reading". Try getting alone in a quiet place without any distractions so that you can calm your heart and mind. I think you will find that this will help you to contemplate and meditate upon the Word, and eventually you WILL find God talking to you through His Word. "Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path"(Psalm 119:105)

The Psalms are an excellent source for words you can pray back to God. Try praying without "calling on the Lord" (repeating over and over "oh Lord Jesus")
I'm not saying there is anything inherently wrong with calling out the words oh Lord Jesus, however, in my many years of experience and observation, calling on the Lord can become very "mechanical". After all, would you talk to a close personal friend or relative that way? God expects and even longs for us to be genuine with Him! He love you JUST AS YOU ARE, with all your faults, shortcomings and sins. JUST TALK TO HIM! He wants to here from YOU, the genuine, open, honest YOU.

As Igzy also mentioned, I would seek some fellowship with other Christians, but there is a lot on your plate already!

"Wise men still seek him".
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Old 08-04-2015, 01:01 PM   #7
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But having struggled with controlling my anger all my life, I'm not sure how much longer I can wait before I lash out at the LC and do something very stupid.

Help? What should I do?
It's good that you can see your side of the problem. Surely the LC system is full of issues. But what you can control here, is your anger, and your behavior.

So this is a good test for you. Forget about counting the days until you are free. Rather, just tell yourself, "Today I can be free from my anger." Identify all the things that push your buttons, and recognize the peril that they pose to you. They are landmines! Don't step on them.

Today you are young, and dependent upon adults, some (many?) of whom are arguably not 'all there', if you know what I mean. The danger is that if you try to smash the proverbial chains that bind you, you will find new and even worse chains following. So I strongly urge you to resist the desire to lash out.

There is a Person who, for me, personifies peace itself. That person is named Jesus. He could stand in front of Herod, or Pilate, or the Sanhedrin, or the jeering throngs or the mocking Roman soldiers. He faced them all.

"I have stilled and quieted My soul" Psalm 131:2. I believe that only Jesus Christ could truly speak those words. The rest of us struggle in pale imitation. But this is a great opportunity for you to learn to imitate Him. If you try, His Spirit will come alongside you and help you. Your situation looks grim: months and months of "ministry" coming at you, with only University and its massive financial outlays as a possible escape. But fear not: a door will open. You have to learn the secret of stillness. Then the door will open.

Peace to you and God bless you.
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Old 08-04-2015, 07:45 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Unsure View Post
Hello,

My name is Vincent. For all of the seventeen years of my life, I have been raised in the Lord's Recovery. I was surrounded by people immersed in the teachings of Witness Lee before I could walk, and had them drilled into my head ever since I was baptized five years ago. Up until about a year prior, I had accepted the Recovery as the highest way and dreamed of being an overcomer in the way Lee had described it.

Now? I. Want. Out.

And I want nothing to do with its members ever again.

However, I am currently ill-equipped to leave the flock of Witness Lee behind (The earliest I can even dream of saying goodbye to the LC is when I get into University next year... Which would involve a lot of loans). As such, unless a miracle occurs and I somehow move out of the house, I am stuck with my fanatically LC-loyal mother for at least 365 days (my father... I'm not sure where he stands anymore. He stopped going to the Sunday meetings five years ago and has been having a mid-life crisis recently). As such, I have been pretending to drink the Kool-Aid like a good little boy, all the while resisting the urge to projectile vomiting it in the face of the serving one feeding me it, smashing the bottle, and flipping the table being used to serve it (to use a... Questionably phrased metaphor). In the meanwhile, I have been collecting information on the LC's past (things like Daystar, the Lee family, etc) but that only really serves to help my case when the time I can actually leave arises. Before that, all I can do is bide my time...

But having struggled with controlling my anger all my life, I'm not sure how much longer I can wait before I lash out at the LC and do something very stupid.

Help? What should I do?
Hi Vincent,
You are very articulate and perceptive young man. I wonder if maybe your dad may have similar feelings but has kept quiet so as not to poison you? It would be good if you had a non-LC Christian friend you could talk to. It would nice if some young ones who left the LC would comment here. I know of one family where one of the parents was a grandchild of WL and all the kids (young adults now) have left the LC. One married a non-LC person and they are attending a large baptist church. Not sure about the others, but they appear to be happy. Before I finally left the LC I had to stop attending meetings for the same reason you mentioned, I would get so upset in some of the meetings that I was afraid I would say something in heated anger. I think bro Freedom would have the best practical advice on living in the recovery but not being of the recovery. I don't know how he does it, I would have blown a gasket by now. I know you mentioned that you might need loans to go to college. If your family has financial needs you should qualify for grants and scholarships that you don't need to pay back. If you are the first person in your family to graduate from college there may be more grants and scholarships available. I've worked in higher education on and off since the 1980s.

I hope that you will find a bible without the LSM footnotes to read. There is a NT version without the footnotes that you could read without calling attention to yourself by your mother seeing you read a non-LSM version. You might find it satisfying to read several chapters at a time of the Gospel of John without the distracting WL footnotes. Maybe the Lord will give you a glimpse into His life as a man on earth? Another thing you might do is when you read ministry material like HWFMR you can ignore the LSM commentary and just focus on the bible verses themselves. If you are "forced" to share something you can share why or how the verse was important to you. I did this kind of thing for a while and sometimes I think the Lord really blessed me and others.

I believe our Lord Jesus Christ wants to be your shepherd during the next year. Open to Him about your feelings and situation and invite Him to come in and be your shepherd. Outwardly things might not change, but He's great at working inward miracles in our lives. Be strong my brother, many are praying.
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Old 08-04-2015, 09:24 PM   #9
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I think bro Freedom would have the best practical advice on living in the recovery but not being of the recovery. I don't know how he does it, I would have blown a gasket by now.
Vincent,
Props to you for coming forward, that step isn't easy. A lot of good advice has been posted. Realize that the feelings of anger and frustration are just a normal reaction to seeing the LC for what it really is. It is your gut instinct telling you something is wrong.

Everyone has had different experiences in the LC, but having LC family members is never easy. I have parents, siblings and extended family who are/were involved with the LC. A few have left, others haven’t. When I have mentioned even the slightest of LC concerns, the conversation always seemed to erupt into an argument, so I learned to avoid the subject. I have remained in the LC only to remain on good terms with my LC family members.

Your concerns about suppressing anger are valid. I don’t recommend trying to hold it in. For me, when I started feeling constantly angry, I knew there had to be some change in my LC involvement, but I knew that a complete disassociation wasn’t the best course of action for me. What I ended up doing was focusing on what I could change, and that involved significantly withdrawing my LC participation, and not answering so many phone calls or text messages. I went from living and breathing LC 24/7 to attending the Sunday meeting and sitting in the back row. The latter was tolerable for me, it also limited the possibility of anyone labeling me as “negative” (which could have serious repercussions in my family relationships). You might not be able to completely change your situation to what would be ideal, but you can try to find ways to minimize the chances of saying something you would regret.

When I first became disillusioned with the LC, I was so angry and frustrated at certain things, and I really just felt like telling everyone off in the LC and making a grand exit. I eventually realized that wouldn't do any good except to give me some temporary gratification. I realized that it's better to take the high road out, whatever that may be. I know of some in the LC who look up to me. Why not let them eventually see "brother Freedom" as the brother who moved onto something better, rather than the brother was subjected to a “public hanging”?

Finally, realize that you have your whole life ahead of you. Some haven’t been so fortunate, they have spent 40+ years in the LC. Looking at the bigger picture, even if you have to stick around another year, it’s tolerable in the larger scheme of things. Eventually the opportunity to leave will arise. Try to focus on what you want next. Don’t get caught up in what you can’t change.

2 Cor 4:17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory
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Old 08-04-2015, 10:09 PM   #10
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@everybody: thank you all for the advice given. I'll be sure to keep it in mind.

@HERn: I guess I could have phrased what I meant by the whole loans thing better. My family is actually very well-to-do and assuming relations between me and them stay friendly they would be more than able to finance my education; my concern was more about getting the financial rug pulled out from under me if I made a move too soon (and due to my background, I probably wouldn't qualify for some of the kinds of grants you mentioned)
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Old 08-04-2015, 11:22 PM   #11
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@everybody: thank you all for the advice given. I'll be sure to keep it in mind.

@HERn: I guess I could have phrased what I meant by the whole loans thing better. My family is actually very well-to-do and assuming relations between me and them stay friendly they would be more than able to finance my education; my concern was more about getting the financial rug pulled out from under me if I made a move too soon (and due to my background, I probably wouldn't qualify for some of the kinds of grants you mentioned)
Hi Vincent,

There's a lot of excellent advice here for you. When I was on my way out, I began to write. I kept a journal and have never stopped writing. I told the Lord exactly how I felt about what was going on inside of me, and what I was seeing. The valuable thing about this is reading back over "then" and comparing to "now". The changes in me and my life were/are amazing. Sometimes I think "who wrote that?" Having a written record of how God made you into the person you were meant to be will be a real blessing to you.

Every day, thank Him for this time in your life that your eyes are being opened. Write what He shows you in your story. In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God for you. This is not easy. It may take you awhile to get to this point. It was pretty much the hardest part for me. It may also be hard for you to read the Bible. If you can, just read it like a book.

Why do you want to leave? Did something happen that caused you to begin to see things differently? Write it down.

Blessings to you, and peace--
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Old 08-07-2015, 07:48 PM   #12
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The latter was tolerable for me, it also limited the possibility of anyone labeling me as “negative” (which could have serious repercussions in my family relationships).

This sentence by Freedom was exactly what my brotherinlaw asked my spouse "Was I negative towards the ministry." Wouldn't the best question be "Was I still following the Lord Jesus?" What is it with the LCers and "the ministry"? Is the ministry God, the Lord Jesus, or even the bible? The ministry is the twisted teachings of WL as propagated by the blinded brothers and LSM. if today no one follows Paul, Peter, John, or even Timothy, why would anyone follow WL?
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Old 08-08-2015, 04:52 AM   #13
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The latter was tolerable for me, it also limited the possibility of anyone labeling me as “negative” (which could have serious repercussions in my family relationships).

This sentence by Freedom was exactly what my brotherinlaw asked my spouse "Was I negative towards the ministry." Wouldn't the best question be "Was I still following the Lord Jesus?" What is it with the LCers and "the ministry"? Is the ministry God, the Lord Jesus, or even the bible? The ministry is the twisted teachings of WL as propagated by the blinded brothers and LSM. if today no one follows Paul, Peter, John, or even Timothy, why would anyone follow WL?
Interesting question. Today it seems the answer is undeniably yes.

That perhaps really is the root of the problem, isn't it?

The Lord needs to take an axe to that root.
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Old 08-08-2015, 08:16 AM   #14
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In Christ you are already free. "You shall know the truth and the truth shall set your free." The truth is you are redeemed by the blood of Jesus. The truth is the Holy Spirit lives in you through faith in Christ. The truth is you are dearly loved by your Father in heaven. Being in or out of the LCM does not change this. No one can bestow the freedom of Christ on you or take it from you. It is yours in Christ. He will bring you to a better place soon but until then, relish the freedom you have now for in Christ you are as free as free can be. There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
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Old 08-08-2015, 08:57 AM   #15
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relish the freedom you have now for in Christ you are as free as free can be.
Amen Amcasci !!!
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Old 08-11-2015, 11:57 AM   #16
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This sentence by Freedom was exactly what my brotherinlaw asked my spouse "Was I negative towards the ministry." Wouldn't the best question be "Was I still following the Lord Jesus?" What is it with the LCers and "the ministry"? Is the ministry God, the Lord Jesus, or even the bible?
We all need to realize the word negative is relative to a certain position. It's not based of facts or truth.
So in the LSM view, when a LSM promoter uses the word negative it is in the context of their viewpoint.
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Old 09-08-2015, 05:42 AM   #17
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I have been raised in the Lord's Recovery. I was surrounded by people immersed in the teachings of Witness Lee before I could walk, and had them drilled into my head ever since I was baptized five years ago.
Your main problem is not being in the Lord's Recovery; it is being seventeen. Think about this: if you were raised in the Methodists or Assemblies of God or Southern Baptists, you'd have the same problem: being immersed in a set of thoughts, teachings and practices which you have no way of independently verifying. You were told what was "real" and because you wanted to get along (to get fed & housed, get approval, to belong to something), you went along with the program.

Now you strongly suspect it is just a sham. But wouldn't you have the same predicament in the Roman Catholic Church or the Syrian Orthodox Church or the Islamic faith? You see all these people doing stuff, because supposedly it's the right thing to do. But when you begin to poke at it, you realize that maybe the "reality" which was presented to you was pretty thin indeed.

But the dilemma of being seventeen is that you don't know the alternative. If this is a sham, then what? An easy alternative is to find the current "alternative lifestyle", which is what I did. Booze, drugs, loud angry music. All the adults are stupid. "Don't trust anyone over 30" was the saying when I was coming up. So you have a bunch of young people in a room, doing bong hits or ecstasy or whatever and thinking that they've found the way out.

Which is, of course, a dead end. But what is the alternative, and how to find it? The only answer that I can give you is that if God is real, and you seek Him, you will find the way. Jesus said, "Seek, and you will find", and if you take Him up on this promise, and seek, and you don't find, then that is God's problem, not yours. You did your part - you sought after reality. God failed to keep His end of the deal and let you find something.

So challenge God - ask Him, "If you are real, show me". As Him to show you the way. He can and He will. God bless you in your journey.

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But having struggled with controlling my anger all my life, I'm not sure how much longer I can wait before I lash out at the LC and do something very stupid.
One of the things you'll have to overcome in life is anger, another is fear, another is shame, another is greed, and so on. These forces are real and they desire to control your life, and make you their puppet. If you "lash out" as you put it, you've ceded control. You stopped giving the Lord's Recovery program control, and gave these dark forces control instead. Not really an improvement. The way out is narrow, indeed, but there is a way out. It is attached to a name, the name of Jesus. He is the way back home to the Father, not Witness Lee or the supposedly "normal" church of Watchman Nee. Not God's economy or Bibles for America or the Christians on Campus group at your local University. But Jesus Christ, revealed to us in the Bible and in the testimonies of thousands, through the ages. Seek and you will find.
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Old 09-26-2015, 09:09 PM   #18
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Dear Trapped,

I know I was in the group as a pre teen and teen. You are not a prisoner nor criminal ,you have rights!!!! Report crazy behavior to your school counsellors you do NOT have to attend church meetings, say you have school work or volunteer work or a part time job and that is how you choose to spend your free time!! If any lay a hand on you call the police.
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Old 04-25-2016, 05:20 PM   #19
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Hi Unsure,

How are you doing? Are you happy?

Best,

HERn
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Old 04-26-2016, 08:28 AM   #20
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Hi Unsure,

How are you doing? Are you happy?

Best,

HERn
I'm okay, I guess. Surviving would be the best word for my situation.
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Old 04-26-2016, 02:14 PM   #21
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Unsure, you've been getting a lot of good advice and are getting prayer support here. You've got many who have been through this exit process before here.

As one who exited, I want to add four things:

1. Christ is the head of every man. That means you and me. Take your orders from him.

2. For Freedom, Christ has set us free, only don't use freedom as a covering for evil. Enjoy genuine freedom in Christ. There are many human things to do that are not sinful. Do them in Christ with enjoyment! Drop local church slavery to "the rules of men"! On the other side many have tried the "go nuts into sin" route. That's not freedom, that's just another form of slavery. The Holy Spirit and God's word will be your guide to this exciting life.

3. Prayreading: Drop mechanical repeating of words if that doesn't help you. Praying from the heart to the Lord while reading the Bible and using the inspired Word in your prayer can be very helpful for sure. If that is what you are doing, and Christ is supplying you through it, keep doing it!

4. Calling on the Lord: Drop mechanical repeating of the Lord's Name if that doesn't help you. Genuinely calling on the Lord's name from a pure heart because you want to talk to Him or seek His help can be a great experience. If that is what you are doing, and Jesus is answering you, keep doing it!

The last two practices are based in scripture, but are not "for show" or to force conformity with the group.

Be well my friend.
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Old 04-26-2016, 03:41 PM   #22
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Surviving would be the best word for my situation.
It could be worse. You could be in the Eastern Lightning. Or North Korea, or ISIS-held Syria. Or in a re-education camp in Yemen, or Somalia. So chin up.

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Originally Posted by JJ View Post
Drop local church slavery to "the rules of men"! On the other side many have tried the "go nuts into sin" route. That's not freedom, that's just another form of slavery.
This is absolutely key, in my mind. The LC tries to present you with "us or death" kind of choices. Like you can't possibly benefit from any Christian fellowship, so why waste your time & effort? Or, you might as well enjoy the flesh, since you're going into darkness anyway, right?

Those are all lies from the pit of hell. Seek the kingdom and you'll find it. God's light can shine into any situation. Even yours. God's presence ('parousia') can surprise you with joy, no matter where you are.
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Old 04-26-2016, 03:44 PM   #23
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I'm okay, I guess. Surviving would be the best word for my situation.
Do you have non-LC friends to talk with? Are the elders or "concerned" saints bothering you?
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Old 04-26-2016, 04:25 PM   #24
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Do you have non-LC friends to talk with? Are the elders or "concerned" saints bothering you?
The saints still don't know. I prefer to keep it that way until I have income. And up until this week, I didn't have too many people that I talked to, but that's probably going to change after this week. I should probably also get back in touch with my best friend; he's a really good person, and IIRC, he's a Mennonite.

@JJ: thanks for the advice
@aron: thanks for reminding me how lucky I am. It could be worse.
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Old 04-26-2016, 06:46 PM   #25
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The saints still don't know. I prefer to keep it that way until I have income. And up until this week, I didn't have too many people that I talked to, but that's probably going to change after this week. I should probably also get back in touch with my best friend; he's a really good person, and IIRC, he's a Mennonite.

@JJ: thanks for the advice
@aron: thanks for reminding me how lucky I am. It could be worse.
OK my friend. Be strong. You are loved.
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Old 12-30-2016, 03:24 AM   #26
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(yes, I'm still alive; not much has changed since I dropped outta here in August. Just took some time to reconsider my views, but still have not reached a conclusion in favour of the LC.)
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Unsure, either we live in a random and meaningless universe, or God has placed you there for a reason. If you are struggling with LC strictures, rest assured that many of your neighbours are also. God has promised that to the degree you care for and shepherd others, to that very degree He'll care for and shepherd you.

And one day, in the midst of your caring and shepherding and feeding others, a great door will open for you. A door that no one can shut.

I know it's a lot to tell a teenager to "be still and wait on God", but you can do it. One day at a time, He'll get you through this season. He is always in charge. "His mercy endures forever" and "He never sleeps nor slumbers". He will lead you on.
I had something else to add but didn't want to hijack Nell's thread on the Living Stream Ministry subsuming the local churches. So I brought my comments over here.

When one says, "wait on the Lord" that actually is, or should be, the opposite of fatalism or passivity. To "wait on the Lord" is a very active state, but it's primarily interior. Outwardly, we recognize that the signs to move are not present. But inwardly, our spirit is free. What I am saying is that if you remain active inwardly your spirit won't get eaten by the LC machine.

My practical advice is, read, read, read. It could be science, history, math, whatever. It is put there by God as a tool to sharpen your wits, and give you perspectives that might take lifetimes to attain. They're there, waiting; be an eager receptacle, and respond. Then you'll be preserved, and will have "food" for others nearby. Eventually at some point which you'll never be able to foretell (because God loves to surprise His children), a great door will open, and all your experiences will come pouring into this new outward environment. But it won't be wholly new, because all your previous work was preparation for that moment. At that point you'll truly sense the multifarious wisdom of God, and will exult and rejoice.

Believe me when I tell you that God is quite capable. Don't sell Him short. By faith you can exercise yourself in your present position, and in due season He'll bless that faith.
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Old 05-29-2017, 05:35 PM   #27
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Oh sweet Vincent. From one church-kid to another, you will be ok, I promise.

One of the most frustrating things about the Local churches, is how they refuse to understand our souls and human condition - and what we need to do to take care of those things. I urge you to find a therapist. Most cities have cheap counseling centers. Or there is probably one through your school.
I encourage you to start using the 'c word', not to your parents- there is no reason to hurt them. But to yourself and your friends, it is a cult! it's ok to identify it as one and give yourself the credit you deserve! We were raised in a cult! there has been great spiritual, and mental damage.

My freshman year at the University, the only way my parents would pay was if I lived in corporate living. And so I did, and got even more damaged than many childhood years combined.
You know what is right for you, but It wouldn't hurt to become financially independent as soon as possible and put yourself through school (which is what I did after my first year).

And after that perhaps a real relationship with your parents can begin, that is outside of the churchlife. I'm in my 30s now and that is still my struggle.

Best of luck to you. Take care of your heart and your head, seek the help you need so that you do not do anything stupid. I feel for you, so completely.
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Old 09-01-2019, 01:06 PM   #28
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Hey guys,
I'm also a young person facing a similar issue as this brother who created this thread had... except I'm two years away from going to university, I haven't really "faked" drinking the KoolAid, and I feel like im on the verge on going kinda athiest. Please help!
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Old 09-01-2019, 03:33 PM   #29
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Hey guys,
I'm also a young person facing a similar issue as this brother who created this thread had... except I'm two years away from going to university, I haven't really "faked" drinking the KoolAid, and I feel like im on the verge on going kinda athiest. Please help!

Hi BJS03,

Can you verbalize (either to yourself or to us) why you are on the verge of going kind of atheist? Whenever I feel a certain way it helps me personally to sit down and identify what those feelings are or the basis for them. It helps them swirl around in my head less and be easier to deal with or tackle.

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Old 09-01-2019, 04:34 PM   #30
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Hi BJS03,

Can you verbalize (either to yourself or to us) why you are on the verge of going kind of atheist? Whenever I feel a certain way it helps me personally to sit down and identify what those feelings are or the basis for them. It helps them swirl around in my head less and be easier to deal with or tackle.

Trapped
What I meant on by kinda going athiest is that I will and want to continue to have a relationship with God but I'm not sure what my christian life would look like after I graduate high school and go to college... maybe I might stay in christianity or maybe I would probably feel that I cant continue on my life being a christian
Long story short my christian life would be uncertain in the future

Last edited by BJS03; 09-01-2019 at 04:45 PM. Reason: Grammatical change
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Old 09-02-2019, 12:56 PM   #31
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What I meant on by kinda going athiest is that I will and want to continue to have a relationship with God but I'm not sure what my christian life would look like after I graduate high school and go to college... maybe I might stay in christianity or maybe I would probably feel that I cant continue on my life being a christian
Long story short my christian life would be uncertain in the future
Here's the thing: If you have accepted Christ, then He is in you. You can't be unborn. You can give up on Him, but He won't give up on you. Christ will never be far, which is an understatement, because He's there on the inside. And He's promised to get you there all glorified and He don't lie!

I've had my share of experiences where I "left God" for some periods of time. At an early age I accepted Christ, but then got myself into such a funk that I totally forgot about Him. However, even in this funked-up state, I was still always seeking out what was the truth (which was actually Christ in me) in all kinds of ways. Long story short, when I was 18 I was in a very low place and cried out in total desperation, "God if you're real, you have to make yourself real to me!" Boy did He ever do that and at that very moment!

And I could tell you of other points in my life where I was desperate and called out, and He answered me wonderfully! My experience has been, the more desperate I am and the more heart-felt my cry is, the stronger He then answers me (and/or I am more ready to hear Him).

One other thing - once you have really tasted Him, the satisfaction in other pleasures starts receding and fading away. The older I get, the less and less satisfied I am in anything but Christ. This is a mercy, because everything else is going by the way of the ash heap very soon!

Praise be to God that He loves us and will get us there - and sometimes He has to take us through some low places . . . so we learn to truly cry out to Him and discover what is really real (Him). This is mercy and grace.
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Old 09-02-2019, 04:23 PM   #32
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This thread is an example of this forum at its best.
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Old 09-02-2019, 07:44 PM   #33
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What I meant on by kinda going athiest is that I will and want to continue to have a relationship with God but I'm not sure what my christian life would look like after I graduate high school and go to college... maybe I might stay in christianity or maybe I would probably feel that I cant continue on my life being a christian
Long story short my christian life would be uncertain in the future

BJS03,

Can you explain a little more what you mean? What are you uncertain about? Why might you feel that you can't continue on your life being a Christian?

Do you have unanswered questions or doubts about God or the Bible?
Did you have an experience(s) where you felt God let you down?
Have you seen someone who is a Christian behave the opposite and cause you be disillusioned?
Has it all been not that real to you?

I'm not saying any of these apply to you. These are just possible things that might be behind your worries. Of course there are other possibilities. Can you elaborate any more?

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Old 10-11-2019, 07:25 PM   #34
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BJS03,

Can you explain a little more what you mean? What are you uncertain about? Why might you feel that you can't continue on your life being a Christian?

Do you have unanswered questions or doubts about God or the Bible?
Did you have an experience(s) where you felt God let you down?
Have you seen someone who is a Christian behave the opposite and cause you be disillusioned?
Has it all been not that real to you?

I'm not saying any of these apply to you. These are just possible things that might be behind your worries. Of course there are other possibilities. Can you elaborate any more?

Trapped
The fact that this is a (dare me not say) cult that ruins other people and brainwashed people like me strays me far away from Christianity. The HWMRs also wound me as well. The signs that this is a cult is straying me away from the LC, and I dont feel a close connection with God at all, mainly because I feel forced by my parents to read the life studies during home meeting (most of the time I dont pay attention, but when I do sometimes I feel hurt and that I'm doing something wrong and I should be a certain way etc.) and be forced to go to the lords table when I really dont (want to) participate in it. Overall, most of my christian life I felt forced to do most of the activities i participate in in the LC, and I didnt gain God from these forced activities (the SSOTs and YP conferences were great people wise, but recently I saw flaws in some of the content they give us)
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Old 10-11-2019, 10:24 PM   #35
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The fact that this is a (dare me not say) cult that ruins other people and brainwashed people like me strays me far away from Christianity. The HWMRs also wound me as well. The signs that this is a cult is straying me away from the LC, and I dont feel a close connection with God at all, mainly because I feel forced by my parents to read the life studies during home meeting (most of the time I dont pay attention, but when I do sometimes I feel hurt and that I'm doing something wrong and I should be a certain way etc.) and be forced to go to the lords table when I really dont (want to) participate in it. Overall, most of my christian life I felt forced to do most of the activities i participate in in the LC, and I didnt gain God from these forced activities (the SSOTs and YP conferences were great people wise, but recently I saw flaws in some of the content they give us)

I don't know if anything I say will help, but these were a few thoughts I had when reading your post.

1. The local churches are very clear that they want nothing to do with Christianity. They want to burn the bridges to Christianity and never build them back and make the chasm bigger and bigger. I have heard these words directly. With that in mind, the LC is, by its own definition, not part of "Christianity" and straying from the LC does not mean you are also straying from Christianity. Many people leave the LC and go TO Christianity and find much relief there.

2. I am a church kid, and I NEVER, EVER, EVER felt a close connection with God in the local church. EVER. The local church actually made me be very closed off to God and almost hate God, while having to simultaneously read the Bible and read the ministry and pretend like any of it was enjoyable or helpful. None of it did anything for me. Leaving the LC and stepping into Christianity where I heard about God's infinite and never ending love, where I heard about how Jesus actually cared deeply for people, and how He came to set us free from everything that oppresses us........that's when I started to feel a close connection with God.

I grew up thinking that God was out to crush me, was out to extinguish the fire of any human enjoyment I allowed to burn inside me, and was out to prevent me from having hobbies or friends or any smile on my face, and I dreaded the day that He would really show up and absolutely blast me to pieces. That didn't happen. It was the local church that crushed me, and God - who I had cursed and turned against for a long time - showed up incredibly softly and politely and meekly.

That last sentence I just wrote contains several YEARS of anger and tears and confusion.

3. I also felt forced to do most of the activities in the LC since as a young person it wasn't a choice. I completely understand your comment about SSOTs and YP conferences being great people wise, but the content being off and not gaining God in them either. I grew up not understanding why everyone around me seemed so enthusiastic about experiencing God, because what I heard did not draw me at all. But the YP sisters would stand up and cry, and the YP brothers would seem so sure of their experience. Fast forward to adulthood, and I have found out that many of those YP who I thought for years were having real experiences of God while I wasn't.......were really just putting it on and have confessed that it wasn't real to them.

What I am trying to say in all that is that you are not alone. You are not strange in feeling the way you are feeling. It is amazing that you have noticed and articulated what you have while still a teenager. Many of us go well on into adulthood knowing something is off but wasting many years in the LC before figuring it out. Most people who leave have to endure a transition period where you are still "in" but hating it, and just having to let time pass while you get your bearings and figure out what to do. I know it is hard, but again, you are not alone and are part of a group of people who have had to travel a similar path. I hope you will keep in touch on this site and let us all know how you are doing. When you are surrounded by everything LC, having a "relief-valve" like this site where you can speak your REAL feelings is invaluable.
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