The Lucky Loser

September 5, 2010

Wrong Expectations

Filed under: Christianity — larryk12309 @ 1:51 am

God is Great but The Church is awful Part 4

Wrong unfulfilled expectations can be dangerous. If someone thinks God is going to do something for them and it never happens there are are two possibilities. Either you’re wrong or God is wrong. What do you think I chose?

When things in my life didn’t line up a certain way I blamed God. Since He didn’t fulfill His side of the bargain (Or so I thought) I have the right to stop believing in The God of The Holy Bible.

During this time of my life I explored The New Age Movement with allot of various off shoots. The interesting thing is the way so many people twist The bible to their way of thinking.

While it had an appeal for a while, I couldn’t fully embrace it, I knew better.

Meanwhile I met the woman who I was going to marry.  Since I saw right through The New Age Movement but wasn’t ready to rejoin the Charismatic/Evangelical crowd I thought there was no harm in giving her denominational church a try.

Because of this I met allot of nice sincere people in this denomination.  Every local group is a bit different like with any nationwide/worldwide organization.  There’s the way they are at HQ versus the way they are at the local group.

It’s possible to serve The Lord through a major denomination.  However allot of times it’s like trying to drive a car without turning on the engine!  There’s too much unnecessary labor!

Eventually,I returned to my charismatic roots.  It all came down to what kind of example was a setting for our kids.

No matter how hard it may be to find a place to fit in I believe God has a place for everyone.  There’s no such thing as THE PERFECT CHURCH that meets all your needs.  But I do believe there’s a place you can find where you can fully give of yourself back to others and back to God.

It’s not about what you can GET from going to church it’s about how much you can give of yourself.  “Give and it shall be given to you.”

The Lord wasn’t just talking about money here.  And thats what made all the difference for me, and how I was able to really feel like I belonged.

God is Great, and there are still “awful” days.  But it’s all good.  We all just need to work at growing past them and learning from our failures.  Because God is working it for our good as promised in Rom 8:28!

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February 6, 2010

God is Great but the Church is Awful-Part 3

Filed under: Christianity — Tags: , , , , , , — larryk12309 @ 7:57 pm

People change and things do get better if you have faith and keep pressing forward. That’s the  big moral of this story. One you’ll hear over and over.

What’s important to remember here is that the church I’m talking about is not the same as it was back then. They’ve come a long long way under their new leadership. So if anyone in the Albany NY area thinks they might know where I’m talking about please keep in mind there’s been a ton of changes since I left.

Back in the day I was way too idealistic.  All that time in the cult church clouded my thinking.

Mind you some idealism is good.  It can give you vision and a sense of purpose.  Too much however can set you up for a big downfall.  Everyone on this side of paradice is still a work in progress.  They’re going to make mistakes.  No matter what cause they believe in.

Meanwhile I was still single and very much unattached.  Issues that should have been dealt with long ago were still a big part of my life even into my 30’s.

That made me a charter member of the nerd club, AKA our church singles group.  We were also known as the guys with serious social issues never gonna get married club.  You see all the eligible guys and gals escaped long before then, leaving the “Singles” group with a bunch of elderly widows and dorky 20 something guys.

Of course it didn’t help that the pastor and assistant pastor squandered a big portion of the churches’ building fund forcing one of the elders to take over.  This guy was a big visionary with lots of great ideas but he was also very dominating.  One by one every elder under him wound up leaving.  Eventually he had to leave too after his family had some big issues to deal with.

However that’s when things turned a corner for that church.  They’re now a thriving satellite church with lots of successful programs

I on the other hand had left long before then.  The nurd club thing had really got to me.  It was time to leave my idealistic bubble and enter the real world.

-to be continued

January 22, 2010

God is Great but the Church is Awful Part2-Cult Land!

I got saved at a Campus Life meeting right after my high school graduation. And then it wasn’t until I went away to college that I found a real bible believing church.

After school finally ended and I had to return home for good I discovered that for me at least it was easier finding a real job than it was finding a good church.

When I finally found something that looked like the one I went to back at school that one turned out to be a cult.

Of course it’s not like they had a sign on the door,

“We’re a cult suckers welcome.”

It was more like,

“We’re the only one’s who know what’s really wrong with the world and the church so stick with us if you want to be one of God‘s favorites.”

And,

“Don’t criticize our leaders or say anything bad about us or God will get you where it counts.”

Not that people should go around dicing their pastor all the time but there is a balance.  There is a right way to question leadership.  However when it reaches paranoia of pathological proportions because everyone’s afraid to say anything critical it’s time to leave. You’re in cult land.

It’s especially true when a church is drifting further and further from sound biblical doctrine. They seemed to make up stuff as they went along.

But by the time I started seeing the warning signs it was already too late.  I had fallen victim to the lie and the emotional chords were around me.

Cults can come in all shapes and sizes.  Some like this church may only consist of one or two fellowships.

The thing about this group was how  they made me feel special and needed at a time when I was desperate for that.  I may have had a real job but it wasn’t a very fulfilling one.  And with a very low self esteem to begin with this place gave me a major boost.

This church wasn’t evil.  They were a victim of their own ignorance.  They were trying to undo what’s wrong with mainstream churchianity in America today.

But the solution isn’t to cut yourself off from the main vine.  Especially if you look and wait long enough you’ll find people working in the system trying to fix the same issues you’re running from.

As for me when I realized at last that I could no longer stand how closed of a group they were I moved away to get away from them.

The trouble was I was now about to be exposed to the ills they were shielding me from.  Not only that but there were lots of areas in my personal life that never got dealt with while I was in the cult.

All that was about to come crashing in on me.  You see, it took ten years to get me out of the cult, and another twenty years to get the cult out of me.

So how about you?

Were you ever in a cult?

Did it ever feel like the ground would swallow you up if you ever said,

“That group is a cult!”

Go to Part 3

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January 18, 2010

God is Great but Church is Awful! Part One

Yup!

Been there, done that!

God is Real

He’s awesome

Jesus is Lord but

The church is just awful.

Have you ever felt that way?

You want to serve God and you believe you should go to church.  But every week on what may be your only day off during the week church is like being in the middle of a soap opera or a really bad TV reality show.

It’s no wonder many people just stay  home and watch Christian TV or listen to Christian radio.  Perhaps that’s why so many false prophets do so well on TV.  Despite having obvious flaws people support them because it’s all they have to keep them going.

On the other hand it could explain why so many others are turning to internet services and cyber-churches.  It’s a happy compromise.

There were many years where it was bad enough that I felt like a reject and a loser in the social and professional world but I also felt rejected in church.  That was the pits.

Somehow I knew I had to keep trying.  Deep down I understood how the church worked in the bible and that it was God’s plan to reach humanity.

Through the next series of posts I’d like to share my story.

It’s all about that awful 4 letter word T-I-M-E.

So what you?

Have you got a bad church story you’d like to share?

Chances are we’ve all been there done, hope it gets better.

-In Jesus

-LarryK12309

Go to Part 2

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December 13, 2009

Freed From A Cult/God’s Place For You

Cults come in all shapes and sizes.  Some may only have one or two fellowships.  The bottom line is how they distrust mainstream Christianity and most other Christian groups.  They also feel they’re God’s favorite and one day the rest of the world will catch up to them.

Back in the day when I was a member of a Holier than most, “Jesus Only,” cult if you had told me that one day there would be over 800 fellowships in America that follow a “One Church, Many Locations” pattern, I would have scoffed in your face.

“You mean everyone watches the senior pastor on a jumbo-tron screen and he’s not even in the building? That can’t work!”

Well yes it can. And it does! In fact it frees up allot more space for growth and sets allot of people free to minister more effectively. And making more and better disciples is what it’s ALL about.

Meanwhile back in those days if you had told me that I would drive 10 miles from my home in my small city to go to a church in the suburbs I’d have said,

“Get thee behind me!”

Especially if you had said the church was in the Town of Halfmoon.

“Halfmoon?

No Way!”

Way!

In fact I’ve never felt like I belonged more to any other church( including the cult church) than I’ve felt now. And it happened so fast!

Part of it is God’s timing and part of it was the people that go there.

Besides it only took 10 years to get me out of a cult. But it took another 2o something years to get the cult out of me!

Now I know that I don’t have to try so hard to prove myself.  That never works for anyone anyway.  (We’re already approved by putting our faith in Christ alone!)

But years ago I never would have thought in my wildest dreams the whole multi church location thing could ever work.

Yet here I am. Proud to belong to a satellite church that draws in part from the same area as the old cult church did. And it feels so good to be SO OK with that!

Who’d a thunk it?!

There’s no such thing as a perfect church, but IMHO there’s a perfect place for everyone.  And it looks like I’ve found mine at last!

What about you?  😉

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December 8, 2009

So We’re Saved, Now What?

Filed under: Christianity — Tags: , , , , , , , — larryk12309 @ 8:08 am
God is Love.  Salvation Mountain
Image by slworking2 via FlickrIt’s a problem many of us Christians struggle with.  We got the salvation message.

It’s a problem many of us Christians face.

We got the salvation basics down alright.

Believe

Repent

Receive.

Declare.

Got it!

OK, so what now?

Somehow many of us fall into this trap that now we’re working for God.  Come judgment day we have to prove ourselves.

Did we accomplish anything for God or did we mess up?

We got this Holy Paranoia thing going on.  What am I supposed to be doing for The Lord?

What if I get it wrong?

No

No!

No!

Hello!

By grace we’re saved and by grace we grow.

The great Apostle Paul laid in all out in the book of Ephesians Chapter Two . . .

8 For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

It’s all about letting God work on us.  We never can earn anything from God.

Yes we are His and we belong to Him.

But it’s never ever ever anything like punching a clock or meeting a quota or making a deadline.

He makes us into His image.

Only He knows the quota.

And the whole world will know when the deadline is upon His return!

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December 6, 2009

Since Nobodies Perfect . . .

I’ve never been to the church “House of Praise” in East Greenbush, but I wish I had been there two weeks ago to hear their guest speaker.  Perhaps after the service I’d understand why they even invited him in the first place.

(HT Albany Times Union)

“Disgraced former national evangelical leader Ted Haggard brought his message of forgiveness to the House of Praise church on Route 9 Sunday, peppering an hourlong talk in front of a congregation of 200 people with some ear-raising nuggets — like how God has specifically used people like Oprah Winfrey to assist in his resurrection from personal despair and public shame.

Haggard, the former president of the National Association of Evangelicals and leader of a mega-church in Colorado, was forced to abandon both posts in 2006 after a male prostitute publicly said Haggard paid him for sex for three years and used methamphetamine in his presence.”

Wow!  That’s big.

You see I used to belong to a church that’s suffered the loss of not one, not two, but THREE leaders due to a moral failure.

Things are never the same after that.  Most members move on and are slowly replaced with others.  The church I’m thinking of is doing well under it’s new leadership and organization.  But I’m not sure I could ever go back after recalling all the damage that was done.

The biggest thing about Haggard is that

“he never discussed the specifics of the controversy, instead referring to his transgressions as “compulsions,” and that with therapy he hasn’t repeated the acts that brought him down. He did say that he never travels alone, posts on Twitter about his whereabouts and constantly calls his wife when they’re not together.”

Since nobodies perfect it’s a too bad people can’t deal with their “compulsions” (Sins) as vigorously BEFORE their caught as they do after.

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November 14, 2009

My Theme Song

Filed under: Christianity — Tags: , , , , , , — larryk12309 @ 10:53 pm

Every blog should have a theme song,

so here’s mine

It’s Rez and

“Love Comes Down”

Because when you lose you win!

November 9, 2009

What I Am and What I Do

Warehouse and businesses at the corner of Univ...
Image by JHSUM via Flickr

For the past 25 years or so I’ve worked in either a warehouse or in building services.  Not exactly what you’d call a professional.

But hey!  It pays the bills and between my wife and I we’ve done OK for us an’ the two kids.

But it’s all good.  For many of us if not most us who we really are is not defined by what we do for a living.

My job is in a warehouse but it’s not who I am or what I “Do.”

I’m a husband to my wife and a dad to my two kids.  What I really do is my ministry at my church.

I help teach kids about the love of Jesus and the truth of God in His Word The Holy Bible.  That’s what I “do.”

Nuff said.

-LarryK12309

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November 8, 2009

Hello world!/Moving Day!

Today is moving day!   Like any move there are boxes stacked up everywhere in the form of redundant posts and what not.

It’s a work in progress and a blog that was already up and running on Brand X.

[picapp src=”4/e/f/9/Floridas_Population_Shrinks_d298.jpg?adImageId=7224427&imageId=6053790″ width=”500″ height=”333″ /]

This is going to be my Christian Witness and Spiritual Issues blog.  These are things that don’t really fit on Soapbox or are a part of My KC Adventure.

So excuse the dust it’s moving Day!

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