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Guilty/Forgiven

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PostSubject: Sordid   Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:29 pm

You have been warned... don't continue on if you're looking for a cheery, uplifting letter. I'm gonna be candid here and dump, if you will, for those interested in praying for my situation and possibly encouraging me in this ridiculous time.

Been at Calvary Chapel Landers for about 5 years. Saw it through a split 2 and a half years ago when the current pastor (old friend of mine) was judged for inappropriate handling of finanaces and "lying" about it. We were pissed but couldnt deny the accusations. Many left and after a couple substitute teachers, they voted in our current pastor. Good guy, but very shallow in his teaching. My 14 year old could do just as good a job. He has bored me to the point of biting my tongue and cheek to stay awake. I'm involved in 2 ministries, the churches website and burning cds of sermons for people. The last 2 years have been painful for me and my heart has been prepared to move on to meatier teaching and growth. I didn't know the Lord was working on my wife's heart about the same thing. It all came out a month ago, when a fellow church buddy dissappeared. I contacted him after 3 sundays and he told me Pastor had asked him to prepare a msg to speak on sunday morning, he spent 3 weeks preparing a msg that was meaty ! dealing with justification, lot of greek references, etc. when presented to the pastor, he said "no". Keep it simple. He even went so far as to say "they already know all that". Ummm helloooooo, even if they do already know it, wouldn't it be good to refresh us with the deeper things ? For me and Lisa that was the end. We decided to take a small vacation and have home church for a while. Handing the cd burning over to a capable hand at church, I set out to be the spiritual head and lead my family in a deep Bible study on sunday mornings (which they loved so much that we've ended up doing it twice a week instead of just Sundays). We're growing, finally. It's been great. But of course the spirit realm gets all pissed off and has to stir everything up to mess up a good thing.
To make a long story even longer, the pastor is pissed that the guy he nixed on the sermon (who left the church too) as well as myself have organized a home Bible study for anyone who wants to come. The drive behind it is to go deeper, to return to the things we did at first, to return to our first love. Now the pastor is upset cuz we have invited people from "his" church. he calls this divisive. Now I'm getting e-mails left and right for and against all that's going on. All kinds of false accusations and misunderstandings are flying around and, quite frankly I'm at a point where I'm sick of it all and it's wreaking havok with my health problems.
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drumdude

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Tue Jan 29, 2008 1:55 pm

I will be Praying that your Church can work things out, and that they will do what God wants.
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Staybrite

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Tue Jan 29, 2008 3:38 pm

Well your Pastor should be your spiritual leader. Right? If he isn't cutting the mustard, I would give serious thought to leaving.

I am sure there is much more to consider, but maybe not. I certainly wouldn't let any man hold me back form diving deeper into the Word and taking my family and friends with me.

Did this pastor come from one of those "seeker sensative" type churches?

(having said all that I will be praying for you brother, you can count on it).

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alldatndensum
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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Tue Jan 29, 2008 3:43 pm

Save those e-mails. If they are abusive in any way, contact your ISP and let them know of the problem.

I know what it is like to be unhappy in a church environment. I'll be praying for you. I've got more to say, but I'll put it in a PM to you.

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rockerVu2

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Tue Jan 29, 2008 4:01 pm

First I think the church belongs to Christ and not to a pastor.
It's sad to read things like this can happen in god's congregation.
It's not good things like this can happen in church.
God will show you His way.
Ask God to show you and your family what's His will for you.
It's very frustrating to be in a church when you feel it's not a blessing.
Hope for a solution soom special now it effects your health too.
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Fundy

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Thu Jan 31, 2008 6:58 am

Keep a record of every email. That way it's all documented so you can go back and check EXACTLY what has gone on, and not leave it all to memory (which is always a tricky thing - for me at least).

It seems your pastor has acted inappropriately and although I guess he feels you're 'stealing' his congregation, he needs to remember that their not HIS congregation but God's congregation.

If it was down to me (bareing in mind I don't know all the facts, or what the emails say) I'd not reply to any of the emails, but just continue to do the Bible Studies. People will and should be able to come if they want to.

And going 'deeper' IS a good thing, and no one should say otherwise.

Fundy

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Guilty/Forgiven

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Thu Jan 31, 2008 12:51 pm

Amen.

Thank you all for your encouragement, it means a LOT to me right now.

Quote :
If it was down to me (bareing in mind I don't know all the facts, or what the emails say) I'd not reply to any of the emails, but just continue to do the Bible Studies. People will and should be able to come if they want to.

Exactly what we're doing. Thank you.

Without being all Prescious-Momentsy and "Joe-Christian", I would like to say that I'm royally sick and tired of all this kind of crap in the "Church".
I want God's Spirit to come in power and for us to be excited about the incredible WORDS of Life written down for us in Scripture ! I want to learn ALL God wants us to know in His Word !
I'm so sick of hearing week after week, month after month what I should be doing or shouldn't be doing... that's legalism ! I already KNOW the do's and don'ts... excite me with the LIVING BREATHING Word ! Like my wife said, "I can't believe how someone can take the most amazing Living Word and make it sound so boring". I hope and pray that everyone here listening to my rant is actually in a Church or home Bible study that's learning about DOCTRINE, historical, geographical, linguistical, Greek, Hebrew and the Grace and Nature of our precious God who saved us rotten peices of trash.

Romans 5:20 "The law was added so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more"


I'll get down off my crate now that I feel better... thanks
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Guilty/Forgiven

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Thu Jan 31, 2008 12:53 pm

Quote :
Did this pastor come from one of those "seeker sensative" type churches?

Kinda have an idea, but not sure what that is ?
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Staybrite

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Thu Jan 31, 2008 4:28 pm

apologetixfreak wrote:
Quote :
Did this pastor come from one of those "seeker sensative" type churches?

Kinda have an idea, but not sure what that is ?

My church used to be "seeker friendly" which is just another way of saying seeker sensative", although we were not guilty of all of this, we definately were guilty of some.

The idea is to get people into church by giving a message full of love and acceptance, and completely ignoring God's wrath and judgement. Most of the messages will make little (or no) reference to actual scripture. But mostly "life application" style pep talks. The pastor almost never reminds people that they are sinners and deserve punishment for their wrong doing (which is why we need Jesus in the first place). So their services tend to contain quite a bit of fluff, and very little meat.

In order to make the unchurched feel welcome some seeker sensative churches may not pray during service, they might not pass the plate, they probably will not ask the congregation to stand and sing along with the band. In lieu of small groups and bible studys they might host family bowling or movie nights, again where little or no attention is given to scripture. One of the biggest tells is the youth group. Does the youth group get into the word and study, or do they meet to play games and eat junk food without giving much attention to scripture or teaching.

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Guilty/Forgiven

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Thu Jan 31, 2008 6:20 pm

Interesting. I don't think that's what's going on at my now-previous church, although other stuff makes me question control issues and insecurities.

My spirit doesn't want to keep bashing (if you will) cuz that's not what we should do (even though I have been mad and my flesh leans towards that)... But I am through with all of this junk.

My plan was to just slip out and tell people we'll miss them, but it didn't happen that way.... and you know what, thank God. Cuz now some other issues are in the light that go beyond just some people wanting to be fed more. Issues that could go beyond merely hurt feelings. Issues that could be harmful to that poor flock he's in control of.

May God open his eyes and grow him thru all of this before he does something really stupid.
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Fundy

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Fri Feb 01, 2008 3:17 am

I've personally always been a bit concerned about churches who just concentrate on the light and fluffy side of Christianity. Saying 'Become a Christian and all you problems will be over' is very far from the truth. Infact the Bible says that when you become a Christian you will face more hardships than before, because you are going in the opposite direction of the world. The difference is that when you're a Christian, this world becomes temporal and fleeting, and we look to an heavenly inheritance.

People need to know about sin. They need to know what they're being saved from! There's not much point in saying 'come to Jesus He's a great guy', because then they're looking for what they can get out of the deal. What we should be saying is 'we have sinned and need to repent, but God sent His Son, Jesus to die for our sins, so we can be eternally with Him in heaven, and escape hell.' It obviously needs to be said in a sensative way, but people need to know about hell, otherwise they'll just get apathetic.

Fundy

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2 - Love one another.
3 - Let God be the judge.

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alldatndensum
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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Fri Feb 01, 2008 8:48 am

Some churches focus on salvation TOO much, though. Granted, for the lost soul, that is THE thing they need. But, the body of Christ also needs to know how to deal with tough issues, needs to be reminded that they still sin and need to repent as well, etc. Paul's letters to the churches were not to convince them to follow Christ--they were reminders of why they follow Him and how to correct their errant ways.

When we get too lopsided with any of our teachings, we become ineffective.

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drumdude

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:40 am

All I can say about this is, FOCUS ON CHRIST.
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Guilty/Forgiven

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Fri Feb 01, 2008 1:27 pm

Amen Fundy. I have had my hardest challenges EVER as a follower of Jesus. Becoming an adopted child of God is the greatest thing in our entire existence... but most of the benefits come after we kick off, that's hard for some to accept. I hate confrontation and I struggle with wanting to be comfortable, which is ironic since God's focus for me has been to teach those in cults, AND he has allowed for several difficult health problems in my life... if I gave that testimony to people, they wouldn't want anything to do with Christianity Smile

I also agree with you Alldat, that we need to have a well-balanced meal of God's Word. The Calvarys boast that they go thru the Bible, verse by verse, which is fantastic... but even in my case I've seen how this could "sound good" and still be ineffective depending on the delivery. Verse by verse, yes, but, we can't apply everything to our walk ! Some passages are straight up deep, and doctrinally speaking, are there to grow us in a better understanding of Him.
Quote :


needs to be reminded that they still sin and need to repent as well
I agree with this too, but a lot of believers set off on their new walk and with a sincere heart towards God, fail miserably... this is what Paul also stressed... we can't do it ! We're miserable sinners in need of God's GRACE. That's a word that I never hear nowadays, and yet His grace is essential to our understanding of His love for us. People stress the whole councel of God.... good ! We need to know about hellfire, judgment, repenting, sowing - reaping and so on. But grace is so important to our walk. We have a Heavenly Father who sets boundaries for our own good, but when we trash those boundaries (as ALL of us do), He's right there without condemnation to pick us up and get us back on the narrow. If a congregation is taught week after week the do's and dont's of this Christian walk, without feeding them God's grace and mercy.... that congregation will have NO joy in the LORD. Because they will always feel condemnation in their hearts due to their inability to live up to the "law".

"But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen." 2Pet.3:18
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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Fri Feb 01, 2008 2:02 pm

I have steered clear of jumping into this thread. I would like to say one thing though, don't stay away from the Body of Christ (read fellowship of believers) because of a problem in your church. I believe that we need to have fellowship one with another and we gain our best support from fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.

Jim, I believe you are fully able to discern whether or not the church you were attending was the place for you to continue to worship. Don't try to keep it at home though. Find another church around you for the sake of fellowship. Pastors come and go, so don't base all of your decisions on the pastor. Look to the body of believers as a whole. We stayed out of a church for months once upon a time and we had to struggle with all of the ups and downs of life on our own. Had we remained connected to other believers, it would have made some of those times much easier to bear.

Every pastor has faults, just like every layman. If you feel that you cannot worship with that pastor, find a body that you can gather together with. I truly believe it is God's intent that we belong to a church family and be involved with it. We were not created to stand alone, humans in general are a very communal being. Satan will do his very best to "separate you from the herd", but look what happens on the African savanah when a communal type animal gets separated from the herd. Lions devour individuals, but not even they can destroy the entire herd. Remember, Satan walks about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour. If you remain separated from the herd, so to speak, you become an easy target.

I will keep you in my prayers. I just wish you were closer to some of us so you could join us in fellowship. That would be awesome.
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rockerVu2

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Fri Feb 01, 2008 5:08 pm

It takes time for me to read all those post.
Time to think what the best answer will be.

When you give your life to Jesus He never told your problems are over.
No but you can pray to Jesus to help you your problems in your personal life, but in the church you join too.
Each church has problems, yours and mine too.
I remember what happened in our church many years ago vwhen there were problems.
The eldest asked the congregation to take a day of fasting and praying for the problem in church.
I agree with what Chris has written and with Fundy too.

Apologetix, I hope God will show you His way and if this church is the place to serve Him.
In church we have to be living building stones.
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Guilty/Forgiven

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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Sat Feb 02, 2008 1:34 am

Thanks everyone. And Thanks Tim, I wish I were near ya'all too. I'd love to fellowship with ya.
I agree that I need to have my family in a local Body, and I appreciate your admonition.
I'm looking forward to this new beginning in '08 and all that God has planned for my family and I. I've known for quite some time that a transition was on the horizon. I wish it didn't have to be the way it was, but what's done is done. Things have calmed down a bit and dialogue has proven there's no "hard" feelings.
Our Bible study will go on as planned and we're all excited about it. "Home" church is still going good, but I would like everyone's prayers regarding our finding a church "home" to fellowship.



ad·mo·ni·tion (dm-nshn)n.
1. Mild, kind, yet earnest reproof.
2. Cautionary advice or warning.

Quote :
All I can say about this is, FOCUS ON CHRIST.

AMEN !
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PostSubject: Re: Sordid   Sat Feb 02, 2008 4:06 am

alldatndensum wrote:
Some churches focus on salvation TOO much, though.

Not most churches in this part of the country.

And Apo, I'm praying that you can find that body of believers to join in fellowship with brother.

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