So You Left an Abusive Church~Now What?

Have you recently left “church”, that is to say, the building, and the system? Maybe you felt the Holy Spirit was showing you things just weren’t right. You may have noticed the church you’d belonged to didn’t bear any resemblance to the early church that Jesus started in the book of Acts.

Or, possibly you were being spiritually abused in some way by either the pastor, or one of more of the church members. For whatever reason, you’re out….so, now that you’re out….now what?

My brother or sister, you may have a vague sense of relief, or possibly any number of emotions you never realized you’d have to deal with. Rest assured, you are not alone.

Many of us have gone through the entire gamut of mentally anguishing doubts and feelings, ranging from anger, guilt, fear, loneliness and a feeling of isolation. Here is where the going gets serious. Now that you’re out, there is the “world” surrounding you on every side. At this point, it’s crucial to take some time reorienting yourself to your newly “unchurched” circumstances.

Please realize, that although you may “feel” alone, Christ is still with you. He did say he’d never leave or forsake you. And although you may have left the church, hopefully, you haven’t left him as well. That would be the worse mistake one could possibly make.

In any case, this is the juncture in your life where you will need to lean on him heavily for support and guidance. Bear in mind that Jesus is your Hope and Anchor. He will see you through this spiritual crisis if you will allow him to.

Personally, in my own wilderness journey, and isolation, I found it extremely important to resist the temptation to turn “outward” for support to fill that spiritual void. There is just something about humans, that like nature, abhor  a void. But, the LAST thing one would need to do is turn back to Egypt, and the bondage that Jesus set you free from.

So, there is a need for spiritual discipline at this time….a need to stay in regular daily study of the scriptures, and in prayer and communication with Jesus. Just being “out” of church doesn’t relief us of the need for him any less. In fact, in the time of spiritual crisis, this is the time when we need him the most.

God bless all of you who may be in a stage of transition right now…however, you may very well find that this “testing” time is very rewarding and strengthening once on the other side. Please……..give yourself, (and Jesus) time. Time to seek him for direction and guidance. One of the WORST possible things you may be tempted to do is to rush to find another fellowship soon after leaving one. This can result in the frying pan- fire syndrome….so, please don’t!

And…another word of warning…Satan has set up many traps for unchurched believers. The internet is one of them. Please don’t fall for what I call, “Mystery Meat” Internet Ministries, that are set up to have an illusion of “church” complete with a teacher, etc. One of the ways, (not the only one by any means) is the hirelings ever present PayPal Acct to accept your donations. Bear in mind that maybe this “teacher” has an ulterior motive…(like money, for example). Maybe he needs to get out of his PJ’s, leave his laptop, and get a real job, ya think?

Well, what I’m trying to say, is these so-called “internet” ministries may look like a viable option to a real fellowship of brethren, but frankly, it’s not. Think “early church”, and pray about following that example. The LORD may simply lead you to eventually gather with a few like minded believers in one another’s homes for prayer, bible study, and breaking bread together. That was the model of the church that Jesus set up in the book of Acts, and it shook the world with it’s power. “For where there are two or more gathered together in His Name, there He will be also”. It’s a PROMISE.

 

 

 

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