from heathen - Tuesday, February 19, 2008
accessed 1103 times
In the last few months there have been people claiming to be the new chosen leaders of the 'The Family', naming Karen and Peter as false prophets.
A friend of mine added me onto the mailing list that these guys have been keeping up and I've so far received a few of their rants.
Peter also acknowledged them on the Family Members website, saying that Mama had tasted their wine and concluded that it was not the wine of the lord.
This is the most recent letter these people have sent out and here is the email address they have been using to forward their stuff:
"…Jesus attacked leadership…Jesus confronted God's Mouthpieces out loud…Jesus was persecuted for exposing their sins…"
Hook me up a new Revolution,
'Cuz this one is a lie,
We sat around laughing,
And watched the last one die.
--Foo Fighters, 'Learn to Fly'
Dear Faithful Reader,
This issue is entirely paraphrased. Family Members of "God's Elite Endtime Army" should honestly answer the below questions. In a compassionate, low-key, non-threatening manner, we hope this helps you in any way it can.
There are no accusations being made here, but, as the old saying goes, "If the shoe fits…"
GBY. We love you.
THE LAW OF LOVE? or THE LAW OF LUST?
(a.k.a., "The Law of Selective Application")
Yet ye have forsaken me, and served other gods: wherefore I will deliver you no more.
Another issue that I have given some thought to is sex. Don't we all? I have gradually realized that as much as we enjoy sex, it has easily become a form of bondage.
The "sexual freedom" that we practice is not really free at all. For many people, it becomes addictive, preventing us from looking at the larger issues. How much time do we spend thinking about our next "date," or angling to get a date with a certain someone, or pouting because we're not getting enough dates? How many partners and married couples have been wrecked and gone through huge, unnecessary jealousy trials, often receiving continual counseling and prayer because someone was having dates with his or her husband or wife?
Free sex in the Family has exacted a high price in time and energy. And for what?
The paradox of free sex is that it often prevents us from having any real, meaningful relationships. It can be an inoculation against developing wonderful, intimate relationships of which sex is an integral part. It also colors how we view people, with men seeing women merely as sex objects. How many Family married couples do you know that married before pregnancy became a complication? Hardly any. How many young women have been pressured—forced?—into sex with partners they did not want? Sadly too many. Why is casual, "sacrificial" sex encouraged, but romance and secular "going steady" discouraged? Think about it.
"There must be some way out of here,"
"Said the Joker to the Thief,"
"There's too much confusion,"
"I can't get no relief."
--Bob Dylan, 'All Along the Watchtower'
Spiritually abusive organizations are hard to leave. The leaders assume power and demand obedience. They foster loyalty to the organization with implied or overt scare tactics and threats. Leaving the Family is equal to leaving God and His protection. Paranoia about the evils outside the Family makes people afraid to leave.
An ironic fact is that it is the caring of our faith that contributes to our being trapped. We care about the kingdom of God. We care about real things, about things that last forever. We want to invest in that. We want to put our energy and our time there. Shouldn't the Family be our best investment? Surely, there's no better place to serve the Lord, right? Or wrong?
Because of the love, the history, but most of all the fear, it is hard to walk away from relationships, even if they are hurtful or abusive.
So how can you know if the Family is a "spiritually abusive relationship?" There is no neat checklist you can use to help you decide…no two situations are identical…listen specially to what God tells you to do…but the following questions will help you better pay attention to what is going on.
Are the leaders graceful? Sheep tend to follow shepherds. Or, instead, is there a bottleneck of power-posturing, performance-oriented leaders at the top? If so, the chances of change and progress are slim. Once again, sheep follow shepherds. And these sheep will become entrenched in domination and legalism, whatever form those take.
Are you supporting what you hate? By staying and contributing your time, money and energy, are you helping something continue when, honestly in your heart, you disagree with it? If you find that you have been supporting something with your life that you hate with your heart, there is something that you can change—you can change you.
Avoid looking at others to see what to do. Don't take a poll. If you take a poll, it might come out different from what your heart is telling you.
There are times when God writes, "the glory of the Lord has departed," on the door and leaves. There are times when it is the best thing for you to leave as well.
Are you able to listen to the voice of sanity? You can probably find that voice by reconnecting with the people who already left the organization, because they saw what you now see. Perhaps there are a whole group of former friends you used to trust before they left. But when they began confronting things and warning you, you thought they were the problem. And the organization told you stay away from them, so you did. Look them up. Find the people who were always caring and kind and gracious to you. Chances are they will be caring and kind and gracious again.
If you came today for the first time, knowing what you now know about the organization, would you stay? If the answer is no, then why are you continuing to stay?
Beware of the false prophets, Jesus warned in Matthew 7:15. The wolves are in the house, and some of them are in charge. Little wonder that it was part of Jesus' mission to expose an abusive organization. It is important to remember three things about His confrontations. First, His confrontations landed on those who saw themselves as God's official spokespersons—the most religious, the best performers. They gave money, attended church and had more Scripture memorized than anyone else. They set the standard for everyone else. Second, Jesus broke the religious rules by confronting those in authority out loud. And third, He was treated as the problem because He said there was a problem.
Let us repeat those last 3 points about Jesus' mission against the Scribes and Pharisees:
1, Jesus attacked the leadership, those who thought they were "God's Mouthpieces," those who followed the rules and knew "the Word" best;
2, Jesus smashed rules and traditions by confronting leadership out loud;
3, Jesus was persecuted, and eventually crucified, for bringing out their sins.
If Mama and Peter died tomorrow, what do you honestly think would happen to the Family?
Everything is changing to me. The darkness draws near, and the light departs. And yet it seems to me that through that darkness I can already see the shining welcome of many a long-lost face.
Love and Prayers,
Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at my mouth, and give them warning from me. When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.